There are many soups that are called “comfort foods” and this is because there really is nothing that can compare to the feeling of cradling a warm vessel of delicious soup in your hands on a cold day. However, soup is also a summer food when you make it with fresh vegetables and sip it cold under a shady tree.
Additionally, the smoothie craze has led more and more people to give a lot of different cold soups a try as well because they are often quite close in taste and texture to healthy smoothies.
Just think of that wildly popular favorite known as gazpacho. This is something that usually has very little salt and relies instead on the freshest herbs, garlic, vegetables, and a bit of healthy vinegar to give it zing. Whether eaten as a snack, a meal substitute, or the first course of a larger meal, it is one of the cleanest and most invigorating foods you can ever experience. It is, as many say, “like drinking a summer day”.
Naturally, many people want a nutritious hot soup as well, and though cooking and processing can decrease the nutrient counts of some foods, there are ways to still enjoy the pleasures of warm and hot soups while also getting a lot of “bang” for the buck. For instance, the classic miso soup recipes can deliver a high number of enzymes, nutrients, and loads of protein. Whether enjoyed with or without noodles, these hot or warm soups really give a ton of nutrition.
If you are more concerned with fiber, you can get a classic “cream” soup by using roasted or boiled potatoes (or other starchy vegetables) and pureeing them for a soup base. This would allow you to gently heat the mixture, rather than boiling it and killing off a lot of enzymes. You could make everything from a creamy broccoli mixture to a classic “chowder” without the dairy and fat. Bean soups work in this way as well, and you can easily puree half of the cooked beans to make an amazingly “creamy” result. Blending beans really adds flavor and texture and is a “trade secret” of vegetarian and vegan soup fans.
We suggest you have a good mix of hot and cold soup recipes on hand. These should put an emphasis on cold soups because it means that they are, technically, “raw” and full of enzymes and nutrients in a way that cooked and processed foods just cannot be.
Like all foods and recipes, however, you do want your soups to be made from the finest whole and fresh foods. While it can be tempting to purchase vegetables that are not in prime condition, thinking that because they are going into the soup pot their “ugliness” won’t matter, but just think of the nutrition they have already lost. You want food to bring vitality and to do that it needs to be made from the best ingredients. The keys are fresh, organic, and local (whenever possible).