Baby Greens Soup with Coconut Milk, Sweet Curry, and Tamarind

Baby Greens Soup with Coconut Milk, Sweet Curry, and Tamarind

  • Servings: 2 qts
  • Time: 30min/prep; 15min/cook
  • Difficulty: easy
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baby-green-soup-with-coconut-milk-sweet-curry-and-tamarind-lr-6829

We call this soup “baby greens” because we’ve tried using spinach and arugula, baby bok choy and spinach, mizuna and baby bok choy, and while the final flavors for each version were somewhat different from each, they were all very delicious. You could almost have a “make your own soup” kind of dinner, or you can put all of your favorite baby greens in and enjoy it that way…soup and salad in one dish!

The combination of coconut milk and curry are well known and loved here in the U.S. but tamarind is just catching on here.  Tamarind, originally from tropical Africa, is now grown and used throughout the world.  Its pulp is sweet and sour at the same time and makes this soup even more exotic.  You can find tamarind paste at most Asian grocery stores, convenient to use and lasts a long time when stored in the fridge.  The pods are much harder to find and require a bit of work to remove the pulp from the seed, which is also edible but only after even more preparation; far more than we think it’s worth.

There are two ways we serve this soup; rustic with the greens placed into the soup at the last minute and served as is, or as a creamy, more refined soup where the greens are added at the last minute to the soup then pureed.  Either way, it’s a real flavorful treat.  We prefer the creamier style even though it means a little more work.


INGREDIENTS

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  • 8 plus 1 cups of baby green salad mix (arugula, baby bok choy, lettuce, mizuna, and romaine, and spinach), triple-washed, spun dry
  • 2 13.5 oz cans or organic coconut milk
  • 2 quarts vegetable stock (we used a vegetable/carrot stock)
  • 2-3 tbsp sweet curry powder
  • 3 tbsp plus 1 tsp tamarind pulp (about 5 tamarind pods)
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • Kosher salt to taste

DIRECTIONS

Preparation:

  • Triple wash the greens, remove and discard any wilted or discolored leaves, spin dry; set aside.
  • If using tamarind pods:
    • Crack the outer shell of the tamarind, being careful to remove any of the harder shell pieces that may stick to the sticky tamarind flesh.
    • Remove the stringy membrane that runs the length of the internal tamarind flesh.
    • Remove the tamarind pulp from around the seeds using your hands or a spoon, place all but 1 tsp in a bowl with warm water (to soften).
      • Mince the remaining 1 tsp, to be used to garnish the finished soup; set aside.
    • Place the contents of the bowl into a small food processor and puree, or it you don’t have one mash the tamarind flesh with a fork until it becomes paste-like.
    • Note:  The seeds are edible but require roasting and extensive work to get to the edible kernel.

Cooking:

  • Pour the vegetable stock, coconut milk, garlic powder, and tamarind paste (and liquid) into a medium to large soup pot, heat on medium-high, stir to mix well, bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer, cook for 10 minutes.
  • Season to taste with kosher salt.
  • Your soup base is done.
  • There are two ways to serve this soup.  One requires a couple more extra steps.
    • Rustic:
      • Put out separate bowls of each type of greens, and one with all of them mixed.
      • Fill each soup bowl with the piping hot soup base.
      • Let your guests add their own greens of choice to their bowl of coconut milk, sweet curry, and tamarind soup base.  What a treat!
    • Creamy:
      • After 10 minutes of cooking add the greens and cook for another minute.
      • Carefully ladle the soup with greens into a high-speed blender filling no more than one-half of the container.
      • Safety tip!  The soup will be hot so make sure you hold the lid of the blender down as the air in any blender with hot items especially liquid will expand rapidly.
      • Blend at high speed until creamy then pour the contents back into the pot.
      • Season to taste with kosher salt.
      • Garnish with a few leaves of the greens used in the soup and a few pieces of the minced tamarind pulp.

baby-green-soup-with-coconut-milk-sweet-curry-and-tamarind-lr-6827
ENJOY!

Baby Greens Soup with Coconut Milk, Sweet Curry, and Tamarind

This is work done for Worden Farm’s new blog, http://www.wordenfarmtotable.com.  Reposted with their permission.

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