Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Avocado Pear Soup with Beet Greens and Cauliflower


I was going to say that this is the best tasting soup I've had this year (but realized that wouldn't be particularly impactful).  So, let me just say that this soup is delicious - and great for you!

As promised, it uses up the beet greens leftover from the Beet and Apple Cucumber Tonic recipe, as well as some of the fresh parsley.

It has a silky smooth consistency with a gentle sweetness from the pear and a satisfying taste and texture from the avocado. 

I didn't detect any hint of bitterness from the greens and our boys gobbled it up without hesitation, both declaring they loved it. I'm quite certain anyone you serve it to will have no idea it contains two cups of beet greens (not to mention three cups of cauliflower*...). 

In other irrelevant musings, and this may just be a flash in the pan, but I find myself irrepressibly attached to this song from Mads Langer (Vampire Diaries).


Avocado Pear Soup with Beet Greens and Cauliflower
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 generous cups cauliflower florets
  • 2 cups loosely packed beet greens, roughly chopped
  • 2 avocados, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 large ripe and juicy pears, cored skin left on and roughly chopped
  • 3 1/2 cups (900 mL) chicken or vegetable stock
  • Handful of parsley
  • 1 tsp coarse black pepper
  • Seasonings to taste
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In a large skillet set over medium-low heat, sautée onion in some olive oil until translucent (about 3 minutes).  Add cauliflower and pear to skillet, sautéing for another 5 minutes or so.  Add chicken or vegetable stock to skillet followed by beet greens and parsley, mixing ingredients to combine.  Allow mixture to come to a boil, reduce heat to simmer and cover - allowing fruit and vegetables to soften for approximately 12 minutes in the skillet.

Remove skillet from heat.  Working in batches, if necessary, add soup to blender along with avocado and blend until smooth.  It should have the consistency of purée - you can adjust the thickness by adding water or more stock as desired and season to taste.

The soup tastes best eaten freshly made.

Serve with a dollop of plain yogurt if you wish or on its own.

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Spotlight on Cauliflower:

Cauliflower, along with its other cruciferous friends (broccoli, cabbage, collard greens, kale, Brussels sprouts), is known for its high concentration of cancer-fighting chemicals called glucosinolates. Glucosinolates are broken down by bacteria in our digestive tract and transformed into bioactive compounds known as isothiocyanates and indole-3-carbinol.

Scientists are learning that these compounds help eliminate cancer-causing substances by regulating our body's detoxification enzymes (more liver support). A significant body of evidence suggests that a regular intake of cruciferous vegetables, helps guard against many types of cancer.

In addition to its cancer fighting properties, cauliflower is also a good source of vitamin C, vitamin K, folate and fibre.

64 comments:

  1. This sounds really really good!

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  2. interesting soup recipe,sound really yummy with avocado in it !!
    Ridwan

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  3. The pear in this is so creative! I always my my avocado soups with mango. This is perfect for winter.

    I'm loving the highlights of cauliflower. I'm typically not a fan, but could certainly hide it in a soup like this to get those glucosinolates.

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  4. I love when you educate us about WHY certain foods are so good for us. It's something I always have to look up :) This soup sounds so lovely and I love the creamy texture. We'll give it a try once my avocados ripen!

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  5. You've sold me! We have been eating "baby beet" leaves in salads. I would love to try this soup!

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  6. What a great idea! The soup sounds amazing and I never thought to use beet greens in a soup! BRAVO!

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  7. Kelly,
    if I had you to cook for me, I'd be one hot thin heathy mama :))

    this soup looks SUPER.

    My Inner Chick http://myinnerchick.com

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  8. I love avocado and have had it in cold soups but never warm or hot; I love the silky texture it provides when you blend it. Would you have served this a a meal or a starter?

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  9. You always introduce me to things I never thought of trying or never thought could be possible. This Avocado Pear Soup really looks interesting. I love avocados, not a huge fan of pears, but I think I can try this and probably will like it

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  10. Okay, I was all over making this soup when I saw it in my inbox - avocado and pears! Then I clicked through and saw beets...LOL. Seriously though, I'm going to try this one. I think I can handle beet greens. Not sure what I'll do with the beets from the greens. ;) It's on my next soup night menu - both of the kids love avocado, so I have no doubt it will win them over. And this might be a way that I'll enjoy cauliflower too. (Other than the unhealthy deep-fried version.) And LOVE the song. Seriously I'm going to have to have you fill my iTunes. I have the Adele song you posted a while back in my playlist for when I go running. I think I'll likely add this one too. :)

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  11. This looks outrageously good! I love avocado and I love pears. What an interesting match up. And thanks for the reply about the beet greens. I definitely will give this soup a try. (And I love your place setting! I picked up 2 bowls that match those plates at the thrift store one day. Wish I had the whole set...it's so pretty!)

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  12. Cathy @ Savory NotesJanuary 5, 2012 at 2:24 AM

    I love the idea of using pears here, it sounds delicious

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  13. Mmm, now that is a nutrient dense soup! I like how you used avocados, I bet it gave it a nice creamy texture and the pears must have given it a bit of sweetness too. I eat alot of broccoli and kale out of the cruciferous veggies but need to find more recipes to sneak in brussel sprouts and cauliflower, which are my least favorite. Great recipe Kelly!

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  14. Very interesting combination here. I bet avocado and pear would make for a yummy chilled soup in summer time too.

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  15. haha, I've learnt a thing or two about marketing posts... :) You know, you could easily substitute kale for the beet greens to avoid the whole beet dilemma - just as nutritious. I promise you will not be able to taste the cauliflower. There is literally no trace of it.

    So happy you dig the song!! Kristy, you have to get the album: Vampire Diaries Soundtrack - it's my favourite of the year! ;0

    Hawaii, really? xo

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  16. So many good veggies in this soup! Healthy fats from the avocado to absorb all of those fat-soluble vitamins in the kale. love it.

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  17. Yum...I'm feeling healthy just reading these recipes!! Very interesting combination of flavors and It sounds like they would all belnd very well.

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  18. i love the idea of thickening the soup with avocado and sweetening it with pear!! deliciousness and health in a bowl!

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  19. I have never had avocado and pear together. It's funny because they have a very similar shape :-)
    Your soup looks delicious and soooooo healthy! Thank you for the cauliflower spotlight. I will buy it this weekend! I love cauliflower raw or just blanched.

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  20. Kelly, this sounds delicious and there is not one fattening or unhealthful thing in it. I can't wait to try it!

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  21. This is the second avocado soup I've seen in two days... I'm totally intrigued!

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  22. delicious healthy combination I haven't had this combination looks wonderful

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  23. What a unique soup, and it sounds so healthy! I would like to try this sometime!

    Jenny @ Savour the Senses

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  24. I love the sound of this soup. So many delicious ingredients!

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  25. Hi Rina, thanks for dropping in!

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  26. Avocado lends a smooth, silky texture and is so tasty too - thanks Ridwan.

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  27. Thanks Laura! The pear seems to work quite well here ~ just the right note of sweet amidst the silky properties of avocado...so many nutrients packed in here but to taste it, you would hardly know ;0

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  28. Thanks France - I'm making an effort to share more nutrition information/profiling for those who are interested. Thanks for noticing and have a great day :)

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  29. Excellent! Let me know how you like it...

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  30. Beet greens are very versatile and particularly easy to work with in stews, soups and stir fries much like kale & bok choy, etc. Thanks Ann.

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  31. Heehee, you could always cook for you ;) enjoy the day! xo

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  32. I like avocado cold as well in the summertime... hope you enjoy this one. Thanks Eva!

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  33. Thanks so much Kay - you're very sweet. I hope you have a great day :)

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  34. Thanks Anne - I picked up the place setting at a local Japanse shop... I thought they were so pretty; a nice way to greet the new year ;)

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  35. Thanks Cathy! Have a great day.

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  36. Indeed... lots going on here but I bet your boys won't notice :) Thanks Lisa, have a beautiful day.

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  37. Indeed... I have a chilled avocado recipe on my site that's quite yummy ;)

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  38. Your so right Joanne! It's a perfect combination that maximizes the absorption of available nutrients :) Have a great day!

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  39. Haha, thanks Linda! it's got a few good things going on :)

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  40. Health in a bowl - I like that!! Thanks Junia; hope you have a great day!

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  41. Hi Sissi, I love cauliflower too no matter how you 'slice' it :)

    Have a great weekend!

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  42. Thanks Chris - plenty of yummies and nutrients going on... hope you enjoy! :)

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  43. The Gods must be telling you something... :)

    Have a great day Tiffany -

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  44. Thanks so much for dropping by!

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  45. The flavours come together nicely - filling without being heavy. I hope you enjoy if you give it a try. Thanks for stopping by; always appreciated.

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  46. Thanks Beth Michelle! I appreciate you dropping in. Have a great day.

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  47. This soup sounds lovely! An interesting combo of fruit and veggie... I love your beat, apple cucumber tonic as well as the health benefits info you provide. I look fwd to trying both!
    Thanks
    Lynn

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  48. Oh yum! What an interesting combination of flavors for a soup =)

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  49. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

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  50. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  52. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  53. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  54. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  55. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything.

    Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  56. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything. Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  57. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything. Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

    ReplyDelete
  58. Heh, I got confused for a minute about the title - in England, they're often called "avocado pears", but then I read your description and realised that you had both avocados AND pears (to be honest I didn't hear anyone call them avocado pears in years so I should have known). I can't imagine the taste combination of avocado and pear together, but avocado is very smooth and tasty and I can imagine it going well with just about everything. Love the colour of the soup Kelly... and I adore the bowl/plate/spoon combo too!

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  59. What a delightful combination of flavors and texture...love it!

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  60. Thanks Lynn, Happy New Year! Hope you're having a good weekend ~

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  61. Thanks Peggy... 'twas yummy :)

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  62. Thanks Charles! I picked up the plate and spoon at a local Japanes store - I popped in because they had a big after Christmas sale and everything was just so beautiful... couldn't resist!

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  63. Thank you Magic of Spice - I was really pleased with texture, smooth and silky - I'm not used to that in homemade soup (at least not the kind I have traditionally made) - the flavour was also suprisingly pleasant (I guess I wasn't entirely sure how the beet greens would come out in the spin ;0)

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  64. I could totally get behind this. I love the idea of using beet greens, avocado and some pears for sweetness.

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