Coconut Curry Soup with Apples

Coconut Curry Soup with Apples

Fall is in the air!

I know it’s a cliché, but I really do love that subtle change of seasons when the mornings become more crisp, the smell in the air changes, and I start to dream of spicy fall soups.

In the Chinese Five Phase system we are in the time of late summer or the harvest. As you walk through farmers markets (or perhaps your own garden) during the month of September, there is no doubt of the abundance of this time of year.

I love farmers markets! Meeting the people who grow our food and seeing all those vegetables stacked so beautifully makes me want to buy one of everything.

While I was in Port Townsend earlier this month, I decided to challenge myself to create a soup made almost entirely of things I was able to buy at the farmers market. I went to a Wednesday market that is smaller than the big Saturday affair and was even able to buy something from every farmer’s stand.

This apple soup turned out so well, I knew I had to share it with you all. Before we get to the recipe, here’s a look at our warming, tart, fungal, and vegetable ingredients.

apple-curry-soup-2

Apples

When I was younger the choices of apples at the market were mealy versions of Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, and tart Granny Smiths. Now that I live in Washington State, the wide number of varieties is astounding! As autumn rushes in, the farmers markets, street corners, and grocery stores are filled with many different kinds of apples.

Apples are filled with antioxidants, have been shown to strongly support heart health, and may even positively affect the healthy microbiome of your gut.1

For this apple soup recipe I recommend finding tart crisp apples. They give this rich soup a slightly tart and sweet flavor that compliments the curry and mushrooms.


Curry Spices, Ginger, Garlic, and Onions

This warming coconut curry soup is filled with spices that are known to support your immune system and keep colds and influenza away.

Let’s take garlic as an example. Garlic has been used against infections for thousands of years. It was used during the 1600s against the plague in Europe and during the 20th century, it was used to prevent gangrene in soldiers during World War I.

In more recent times, studies have shown that garlic increases the natural killer cells of the immune system, reduces inflammatory cytokines, and can decrease specific pathogens such as bacterial cells like Streptococcus and fungi such as Candida albicans2,3,4,5,6

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Shiitake Mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms give a delicious earthy taste to this meal. They have long been used as a building and nourishing tonic and have received a lot of attention for their ability to support the immune system and improve cardiovascular health.

Researchers in Florida have shown that a shiitake mushroom a day can “keep the doctor away.” In this study participants were given one shiitake mushroom a day to eat for a month. After a month they showed improvements in numerous immune system markers.7

If you don’t have access to fresh shiitake mushrooms, you can substitute dried instead.

Organic potatoes in the burlap sack

Potatoes

Potatoes often get a bad rap. Either they are seen as a boring or, in recent years, an evil carbohydrate. Many people only consume potatoes that have been deep fried in oil. But whole organic potatoes offer a nourishing meal filled with important nutrients like potassium and B6.

I used Yellow Finn potatoes in this coconut curry soup and loved how their yellow golden texture gave this soup a silky smooth texture.

So let’s see how all of these flavors come together!

Coconut Curry Soup with Apples

This spicy and creamy coconut curry soup is the perfect way to enjoy the tastes of fall and support your immune system at the same time. The tart apples are mellowed with the richness of the potatoes and shiitakes while the spices give this soup a little kick.

You can buy already made curry powders or blend one yourself as seen here.

Because so many nutrients are found in the skins of potatoes and apples, I did not peel them.

What you’ll need…

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  • 2 small apples, cubed into small pieces (I like the more tart apples like McIntosh)
  • 2 medium potatoes, cubed into small pieces (I like Yellow Finn potatoes)
  • 1 quart vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • Salt to taste (I added about 2 teaspoons)
  • 2 handfuls fresh shiitakes, cut into quarters (If using dry shiitakes, rehydrate the mushrooms in hot water and then cut to size)
  • Parsley for garnish (optional)

Begin by melting the butter over medium heat in a medium saucepan.

Add the minced onion and sauté until translucent.

Add the fresh ginger, curry powder, and freshly ground pepper. Stir for one minute or until the spices are fragrant.

Add the apples, potatoes, broth, and coconut milk. The liquids should just cover the potatoes and apples.

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Bring it to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Add salt to taste.

Remove from heat and let cool slightly.

Using an immersion blender or a regular blender, purée the soup until smooth.

Return the soup to the pan and add the shiitakes.

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Simmer for 10 minutes or until shiitakes are cooked. Stir frequently.

Add salt and pepper as desired. Optional parsley for garnish.

Makes four large servings

apple-curry-soup-12

Citations

“Apples.” The World’s Healthiest Foods. Accessed September 3, 2015. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=15.

Bergner, P. (1996). The Healing Power of Garlic (p. 23). Prima Publishing.

Ishikawa, Hideki, Tomoko Saeki, Toru Otani, Takaichiro Suzuki, Kojiro Shimozuma, Hoyoku Nishino, Sanae Fukuda, and Kanehisa Morimoto. “Aged Garlic Extract Prevents a Decline of NK Cell Number and Activity in Patients with Advanced Cancer.” The Journal of nutrition 136, no. 3 Suppl (2006): 816S-820S.

Mozaffari-Khosravi, Hassan, Hamideh-al-Sadat Hesabgar, Mohammad-Bagher Owlia, Hossein Hadinedoushan, Kazem Barzegar, and Mohammad Hossein Fllahzadeh. “The Effect of Garlic Tablet on Pro-inflammatory Cytokines in Postmenopausal Osteoporotic Women: A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial.” Journal of dietary supplements 9, no. 4 (2012): doi:10.3109/19390211.2012.726703.

Bakhshi, Mahin, Jamileh-Bigom Taheri, Samira Basir Shabestari, Anett Tanik, and Roozbeh Pahlevan. “Comparison of Therapeutic Effect of Aqueous Extract of Garlic and Nystatin Mouthwash in Denture Stomatitis.” Gerodontology 29, no. 2 (2012): doi:10.1111/j.1741-2358.2011.00544.x.

Chavan, Sangeeta Devanand, Nagesh Lakshminarayan Shetty, and Muralikrishna Kanuri. “Comparative Evaluation of Garlic Extract Mouthwash and Chlorhexidine Mouthwash on Salivary Streptococcus Mutans Count – An in Vitro Study.” Oral health & preventive dentistry 8, no. 4 (2010): 369-74.

“Mushrooms Boost Immunity, Suggests Research.” ScienceDaily. April 16, 2015. Accessed September 3, 2015.

 

31 comments
    • Marcy Powell says:

      It sounds like a wonderful recipe, except for the butter. Butter is detrimental to good health. Read Dr. Caldwell Esseylstein’s book on How to Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease. I always saute in water or vegetable broth

      • Rosalee de la Forêt says:

        Hi Marcy, While it was previously thought that saturated fats cause heart disease, this has been well established as a myth. Natural fats, like butter, when consumed in moderation, can be an important way to nourish the body with healthy fats which can decrease systemic inflammation and provide essential fatty acids and Vitamin A. Because our dairy industry is rife with problems, I always recommend getting the best possible quality. We buy organic, pastured-raised, cultured butter and love the health benefits we get from it.

      • Heather says:

        I always shudder when I hear someone still thinking that butter and other saturated fats are unhealthy, but we’ve been fed that lie for so long it’s ingrained in a lot of people and doctors especially should fix this big mess. Some are still perpetuating this myth – that and high cholesterol causing heart disease. Sifting through the marketing is still challenging (and there’s big money in statin drugs) but thankfully now we have access to good, true information and can sift through the dung. Margarine and other polyunsaturated fats are one of man’s most dangerous inventions. If God didn’t make it, don’t eat it. It’s always best to eat food in its most original state.

      • Rose says:

        Obviously and sadly Marcy the below comments prove that people still think dairy is natural or good for you even though it is a fluid from another species meant to turn a tiny calf into a huge heifer. There is SO much currant scientific data and evidence that diary is unhealthy. Mind boggling that people can be so set in their ways they won’t even open their minds to new information and con’t to spread info to the contrary. Perhaps a visit to read up on currant information on the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine site is in order. Your suggestion on omitting diary is applauded!! As a side note, Heather, who said to replace butter with margarine? Marcy did not suggest that, if you read her comment she said she used water or broth.

    • Elizabeth says:

      I made the soup last night (Australia time)….and to be honest, it was positively yummy! Best soup I have had in a long time, and healthy too!! I actually used one of the combinations of spices suggested and it turned out to be a good choice. I will certainly be making it again.
      Thankyou Rosalee

  1. Jaylene says:

    This looks really good. I am excited to try it. I get stuck using the same ingredients that I am used to, in the same way, so I love a new recipe.

  2. Rev. kristyne says:

    Love your recipes Rosalee and will try this one. My favorite fall soup is Sweet Potato:

    4 lbs sweet potatoes (baked and peeled)
    1-2 large chopped onions (2 Cups approx.)
    1 tsp each ground cumin, 1 tsp ground turmeric (good anti inflammatory for grama’s!)
    1/2 tsp salt and a pinch of crushed red pepper or cayenne, if desired
    6 oz. nitrite free bacon (if you don’t eat meat, 1 tsp. of liquid smoke works well)
    8 C chicken stock or veggie stock (or 2 ‘boxes’ low sodium organic broth)
    1 can coconut milk (from the Thai/Asian food aisle)
    optional- parmesan cheese and parsley for garnish

    Bake sweet potatoes in the oven about 40 minutes then let them cool (better caramelized sort of flavor and vitamins than boiling or microwave, but can do either). Peel and blend with some of the broth called for until smooth. Traditional or immersion blender works well. In lieu of either, use a potato ricer.
    In soup pot – brown bacon until crisp then remove 1/2 of it and set aside for garnish.
    Fry onion in the bacon fat and toss in the cumin and add turmeric and crushed red pepper as well.
    Add sweet potatoes and remaining stock, coconut milk, and stir well, heat through for a few minutes.
    Garnish with remaining bacon, and parmesan cheese if you wish. Even better leftover as flavors meld more.

  3. Gabriela says:

    Rosalee, do you have something to say about food combining? I generally try no to combine fruit with other ingredients….?.. like more complex starches

    I just can’t help it… do they grow coconuts in Port Townsend? :) This is not meant in a bad way… when I was in chef school the goal was to make the final dinner from ingredients sourced within 100 miles… it was pretty challenging here in Rocky Mountains in June… we made it … almost…lemons sneaked in :)

    • Rosalee de la Forêt says:

      Hi Gabriela,

      I have never found any compelling evidence in favor of food combining so I don’t practice it.

      They do not have coconut trees in Port Townsend which is why I said that I made this recipe “almost” entirely from things found at the market. They did however have fresh ginger that someone had grown in a greenhouse!

  4. Barbara says:

    My husband has an allergy to shitake mushrooms, he has violent vomiting after eating them. He can eat the common mushrooms from grocery stores without problems. Can you substitute them okay?

  5. Susan says:

    This sounds delicious and I look forward to trying it. However, I need to make a substitution because I’m allergic to coconut. Since I’m unfamiliar with cooking with coconut milk (due to my allergy), I’m at a loss as to what would make a good substitution. Any suggestions?

  6. Richard says:

    Rosalee, I are going to make this soup for dinner tonight. There is a picture of a bulb of garlic with the soup however the recipe doesn’t say anything about garlic. Add it or no. We can’t wait to have some of what sounds like a delicious soup. Oh, can one add some miso with adjustments? If so what kind would you recommend if the answer is yes.

    • Rosalee de la Forêt says:

      You caught my error! I went to make this recipe again with the recipe card and realized I forgot to add the garlic to the recipe. Fortunately, it’s good either way. If you want to add the garlic, I added three cloves. You could certainly try adding some miso. I love the dandelion leek miso from South River miso – but I am sure any kind would work. I like to add miso to my bowl, then serve the soup on top of that and stir it up. That way the miso doesn’t get overly cooked.

  7. M.A. says:

    This is very good — I’m scarfing down a bowlful right now! — and with some bread for dipping and a salad it makes a lovely October supper Thank you!

  8. Marjorie says:

    I am lactose intolerant what can I do to replace the butter. Can I use olive oil. I certainly would like to try it.It sure sounds good.

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