Inspiration doesn’t always come at the best time. Sometimes it appears out of nowhere at the most inconvenient time. In my twenties, I was a dedicated songwriter. I would sing in bars and open mic nights. Inspiration for my music would flow when I went for a run. I would rehearse the lyrics over and over while running to make sure I remembered them when I got home. Soon, after losing many songs mid-run, I started carrying a pen and paper with me. It’s safe to say I didn’t get a ton of running done, but I wrote some great lyrics!
Today, after running a bunch of errands with my daughter, and while making her the requested chicken taco, I had the inspiration for a soup. Now, I love making soup – it’s my favorite thing, and my favorite procrastination tool. Whenever things get overwhelming or stressful, I like to throw myself into the kitchen and lose my thoughts in the steaming pot. So, given the 1,000 things I need to do today, and I should be doing today, I went with the soup (and now I am sitting here writing this!). Because inspiration doesn’t always come at the best time, but when it does, you have to let it flow.
My husband and I recently took a trip to Mexico to celebrate our 10-year anniversary. While there, I had the most delicious carrot ginger soup with coconut milk. It was sublime. Sweet, but with a subtle spice from Thai chilies, and topped with toasted coconut and fresh basil. I enjoyed every bite of gorgeous orange canvas and vowed to recreate it.
Carrot Ginger Coconut Soup
So during my evening of procrastination, my thoughts turned to this soup and I set out to put my signature touch on the recipe. Starting with carrots, ginger and delicata squash (because that is my favorite fall vegetable), I cooked them gently in a cup of water until soft, then pureed them in the blender with some coconut milk until smooth. Putting them back in the pot with more coconut milk and a few Thai chilies, I let all the flavors just simmer away until the sweet and spice combined perfectly. Since I didn’t have basil on hand (and next time I will definitely try it), I chopped some cilantro for garnish along with toasted coconut. It was delicious – fall in a bowl and beautiful memories of time with my husband and the warmth of a Mexican evening.
All in a Bowl of Soup
Sometimes procrastination is a gorgeous thing. Of course then I looked at the messy kitchen and all that needed to be done, and with a sigh I got to it. But that’s what I love about soup. It carries you away. Food has the power to do that. To inspire, to create, to love. It’s all in a bowl of soup. Here’s my recipe below.
Carrot Ginger Soup with Coconut
5 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 delicata squash peeled and chopped
1/2 inch of fresh ginger (or more if you like ginger)
1 cup water
1 can light coconut milk
4 red Thai chilies
Cilantro or basil, chopped (for garnish)
½ cup toasted coconut
Salt and pepper to taste
- Cook the carrots, ginger and delicata squash gently in one cup of water until soft.
- Let it cool a bit, then puree in the blender with some coconut milk until smooth. Put the mixture back in the pot with the rest of the coconut milk and the Thai chilies.
- Let all the flavors just simmer away until the sweet and spice combine perfectly.
- Chop some cilantro or basil for garnish. Lightly toast shredded coconut in a skillet over low heat until it just turns golden.
- Salt and pepper your soup to taste, then garnish with herbs and coconut. You can also add thin strips of fresh carrot to the soup for added carrot taste and contrasting texture.