Saturday, September 11, 2010

Peppery Vegetable Puree

Most of the posts I'll be making will be about baked goods, but occasionally, I'll be sharing a savory dish or two. This recipe is one of my recent favorites and it was born of the union of between the scorching hot Tokyo summer (temperatures in the mid to high 90's for weeks on end) and my love of soup. I wanted something soup-like, but I didn't want to have a pot on the burner for about an hour.

Incidentally, pureeing your vegetables may help you lose weight. It may seem illogical to conclude that eating them at the consistency of applesauce will fill your stomach better and longer than eating whole vegetables, but it's true. British researchers conducted a study in which they fed workers at the same factory identical lunches except that one ate the contents pureed together and the other as whole foods. One group was given chicken, carrots, rice, and a glass of water. The other group was given the same foods in exactly the same proportions pureed into a soup. Those who ate the pureed food had full stomachs longer and didn't get as hungry for 45 minutes or longer after those who ate the whole foods. Drinking water with your food is less helpful in keeping your stomach full than adding that water to your food and making a puree as it slows digestion to have a large mass of thick liquid in your stomach.

Peppery Vegetable Puree:
1/2 cup water
1 chicken consomme soup cube
1/2 medium tomato, roughly quartered
1 medium slice white onion, roughly diced
1 small carrot, sliced thinly
4 broccoli flowerets
coarsely ground black pepper, garlic powder, parsley (to taste)
Pour the water into a microwave safe dish with a lid. Glass is preferable because it is inert and won't release chemicals during cooking. Add the consomme cube, tomato, onion, carrot slices, and the broccoli. Microwave on high power for 6 minutes. Remove and stir. Sprinkle the black pepper, garlic powder, and parsley on top. The black pepper makes it slightly hot and adds a nice kick. Cook for another 5 minutes if necessary to cook the carrots (check at 90 second intervals). I use about a quarter teaspoon of each of them. Puree with an immersion blender.

Nutrition information courtesy of the SparkRecipes calculator:

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