The last week and a half has been incredibly busy. I’m in the middle of midterms-and-papers-and-readings season. I spend my mornings in class and my afternoons studying. The to-do list is never exhausted, and it’s a rare day when everything I set out to do is accomplished before midnight. On days like these, what breaks the monotony is coming home for lunch. I love cooking something satisfying in the middle of my day. I get to leave behind whatever I’ve been studying for a little while, and return to my work refreshed.
The requirements are for the dish I choose to make are strict. It must be something that I can make in 30 minutes or less, but it must also be hearty enough to pull me through the afternoon.
This kale pasta does just that, and I made it twice last week alone. Crisp and bitter kale is paired with rich, buttery pasta. Salty, savory, and satisfying enough for a midday meal. I imagine it would make a great quick dinner, too.
Most of the broccoli soups I’ve had in my life have been cream of broccoli, broccoli and cheddar, or something else heavy and salty. They’ve always been too much for me. Too rich, too unbalanced. Then, last week, the guys at The Bitten Word made a post about the Vegetarian Times’ Sesame-Ginger Broccoli Soup. This got me thinking of pairing broccoli with flavors that lift it up instead of weighing it down. I loved the concept– an easy soup to keep you warm, with fresh flavors.
This is a riff on that recipe. I’ve taken out the sesame and soy flavors, mellowed out the ginger, and added some citrus for acidity. All of the broccoli gets pureed, meaning the soup is entirely smooth, not chunky. This is a soup that tastes like broccoli, and not anything else, while hitting all the same notes– clean, light, and refreshing.
This soup is one that’s perfect for the warmer weather of early spring. It gets brightened up with a little bit of ginger (you’ll barely taste it) and more than a little bit of lemon juice (you’ll definitely taste it). Using both the broccoli florets and the stalk gives the soup a light green color.