This is a free excerpt from the book, God's Banquet Table
What is the value of cooking vegetables? First of all, there can be great pleasure in sitting down to a hot bowl of soup or a bowl full of steaming hot carrots, potatoes and corn on the cob. Secondly, cooked vegetables are an excellent source of soft bulk. The enzymes are dead, the minerals and vitamins have been compromised through cooking, but vegetables are filled with fiber and, when cooked, they become soft, making them excellent in absorbing but reducing the scouring effect that raw vegetables would have.
The challenge in cooking vegetables is not to baptize them in toxic fat.
Remember to chew the vegetables well because 50% of starch digestion takes place in the mouth.
A steamer with a built-in timer is the best way to cook vegetables. Most people when boiling their vegetables, throw away the best part—the cooking water. Steaming vegetables conserves the maximum amount of nutrients by subjecting the vegetables to the least amount of heat. Cut your vegetables into small pieces for quicker steaming.
45 MINUTES Beets, carrots turnips, squash and artichokes
25 MINUTES Sweet potatoes, broccoli stalks, green beans, peas, parsnips, celery
15 MINUTES Garlic and cabbage, sweet peppers, cauliflower, onions, asparagus
7 MINUTES Mushrooms, broccoli tips, asparagus tips, zucchini
The vegetable soup pot
The advantage of soup is that nothing is wasted. Vegetable soups are extremely low in calories and filling, making it a complete meal. They are inexpensive and easy to make. In fact, some of my most popular soups were thrown together, using up old vegetables hidden in the back of my fridge. Fridge Cleanup Soup.
It is awfully hard to go wrong in making vegetable soup. If you are just a beginner in the kitchen or having that special someone over for supper, a bowl of savory soup is always a winner.
Find the biggest pot in the house and fill it half full of fresh cool water. The pot we will be using in the following recipe will contain 12 cups of water when half full. You can adjust the measurements to the proportion and size of your pot.
The key to good vegetable soup is timing and broth. Simulated chicken base is an excellent starting point. Check the ingredients to make sure that there are no animal fats or preservatives. A good quality chicken base can usually be purchased in your local health food store. You may also want to try an all natural vegetable base soup mix. Garlic, onions and seasonings, soya sauce, bean sauce—all of these ingredients must first be added to the cold water, allowing the flavor to mingle before adding the contents of your soup. Before adding vegetables, taste the soup broth after ten minutes of boiling to make sure that it is full-bodied and perfectly seasoned to your taste.
If you like your soups thick, add Quinoa or whole oats that have been powdered in the coffee grinder. These are also excellent for thickening stews. (Potato juice also is an excellent thickener working like corn starch.) Once your broth has simmered for 15 minutes add any dried ingredients such as split peas, legumes or lentils. Go easy on these ingredients because they are rich, concentrated foods. A small amount is more than enough. They will also add to the thickening of the soup because of the starches. Soak beans overnight before adding them to the soup. If you are not used to eating beans, brings the beans to a boil then throw away the water. Do not add it to the soup broth or you may find yourself in an embarrassing situation
Your next step is to add any starchy, dense vegetables, such as carrots, potatoes, yams, turnip and squash. These vegetables take longer to cook. Chop up the remainder of the soft vegetables while they are simmering on the stove. Timing is important so there will be no over-cooked mushy veggies. Vegetables are added according to their required cooking time.
Just about now your house is going to be filled with savory smells that will entice your children into the kitchen asking you, Daddy is the soup done yet? I’m starving!
About five minutes before you turn off the heat, add the tomato paste. The longer tomatoes cook the more acidic they become. After turning off the stove, allow the soup to stand for about an hour. Then add good tasting yeast for a rich cheesy flavor.
You can also add miso, but never cook this delicate fermented bean paste. Miso has been fermented for over two years in large cakes, keeping its enzyme qualities and producing healthy bacteria that help to clean the colon.
We hope that these soups will give you a starting point in which you can begin to create your own dishes that will reflect your character and unique taste. We have left lots of room for creativity. All of these recipes are flexible but if you find a particular taste that you want to share with the world, send it in.
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