According to TCM, it is important to avoid too many raw foods during winter because they tend to cool the body and can deplete our digestive “fire” which is the ability to assimilate food efficiently. I recommend eating warming foods, such as root vegetables, dark leafy greens, kidney and black beans, walnuts, and whole grains. These specific foods help to fortify the kidneys, uplift the emotions, nourish the body, keep you warm and help you to conserve energy. I emphasize soups and stews, especially, and this root vegetable soup is a nutrient-rich way to stay warm during the next few months.
1/2 cup olive oil
1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
2 carrots, cut into thick rounds
1 large parsnip, cubed
1 small rutabaga, cubed
2 leeks, thickly sliced
1 onion, quartered
3 bay leaves
4 thyme sprigs
3 rosemary sprigs
5 cups vegetable stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss prepared vegetables in olive oil until coated.
Transfer vegetables to a large baking sheet, tucking herbs among them.
Roast for 50 min or until tender, turning vegetables occasionally to ensure even browning.
Remove from oven, discard herbs and place vegetables in a large soup pot.
Pour stock over vegetables and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, season to taste, and simmer 10 minutes.
Blend for a few minutes until smooth using an immersion blender or food processor. *Use caution and let cool if using a food processor.
Return soup to the pot to heat through.