Simple, nutritious, hearty and very tasty. My secret ingredient which adds that extra body and nutty flavor is good ‘ol OATS! Yes! Store bought rolled oats, roasted in a teeny bit of butter, along with all the veggies, makes this soup ultra nutritious and at the same time downright delicious. The usual vegetables one would find in their refrigerators, maybe just one exception- bottle gourd. Bottle gourd, or lauki aka ghia in Hindi, is considered a very boring vegetable in our household. I usually make it as a stir fry with Indian spices, but my family, especially my 9-year old simply loathes it 😦 It’s placid and dull tasting, but good for you, as all veggies are. In case, one can’t get their hands on this bright green vegetable, certainly substitute with squash or frankly any vegetable if your choice, versatility is the name of the game. And in case you can’t get your kids to eat oats, which is in my case, this is a perfect way to disguise them. All put together in a soup pot or Dutch oven and puréed together, with a handful of yellow corn and a dollop of fresh cream added toward the end. Let me tell you, your family would be left guessing as to what went inside the soup!
Not many photos to add to this particular recipe post, since I didn’t realize my family, especially my husband would love the taste so much! My first time trying out this recipe and certainly not the last….
Rolled oats – 3/4 cup
Chopped onions – 1 cup
Chopped celery – 2 cups
Chopped carrots – 2 cups
Sliced white mushrooms – 2 cups
Bottle gourd (lauki or ghia), peeled and diced – 2 cups
Diced potatoes – 1 cup
Frozen or fresh yellow corn kernels – 1 cup
2/3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp.red chilli powder or red chilli flakes
Extra virgin olive oil – 1 tbsp.
Butter – 1/2 tbsp. I go shy on butter!
Fresh cream – 2 tbsp.
Water, as required
Salt and black pepper powder, to taste
Heat a Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat. Add butter and the oats. Sauté on medium low heat for a few minutes, till light brown, a nice nutty aroma emanates. Add the extra virgin olive oil. Add onions, celery and carrots and sauté for 5-7 minutes on medium to medium high heat, till they turn translucent. Add a little salt. Add the garlic. Add the bottle gourd, mushrooms, potatoes and sauté for another 5 minutes on medium heat. Add turmeric, red chilli powder or flakes. Stir for a minute or so. Add enough water, say an inch above all the veggies. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer on low, for 20 minutes, till they are cooked and soft. Blend the soup in a blender, when cool. I use my handy immersion blender. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Add the corn kernels and simmer till the kernels are soft and cooked.
Before serving, stir in the fresh cream. Serve piping hot!