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Recipe Friday: African Tomato and Peanut Soup

Posted on: June 18, 2010

Happy Friday! I’m starting a tradition of posting recipes to start off the weekend, so be sure to check here each Friday if you’re looking for something interesting to cook up!

I made this soup for the first time last weekend, and I have to share it with you all, it’s that good. I licked the spoon, the bowl, nearly the pot! It’s thick and hearty… hey, it’s still soup weather up here in Seattle! Another plus? It’s also vegan!

This soup uses pureed sweet potatoes as a thickener, but the real star is the hint of peanut flavor. The savoriness of the peanuts, onions, and garlic plays off nicely against the sweet spices. I guarantee you that this will feature regularly in your repertoire!

African Tomato and Peanut Soup

1 tbsp canola oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 (or more!) garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp minced fresh ginger
1.5 tsp ground cumin
1.5 tsp ground coriander
0.5 tsp cinnamon
1 pinch ground cloves
3 ripe medium tomatoes, chopped
2 large (about 1.5 lbs) sweet potatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 carrot, coarsely chopped
4.5 c water
1 tsp salt
1 pinch cayenne (optional)
¼ c chopped dry-roasted, unsalted peanuts
2 tbsp peanut butter (I added a little more to taste)
1 tbsp chopped cilantro

1. In a large saucepan or small stockpot, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until the onion browns around the edges. Add the garlic, ginger, and spices, and cook for 3 more minutes, stirring often.

2. Add the tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and carrot, and cook for 5 minutes.

3. Add the water and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover the pot, and simmer the soup for 30 minutes.

4. With a food processor or blender (warning! since the soup is hot, process in batches, not filling the container more than halfway at a time to avoid burns), blend the soup almost to a puree. Taste, and add the cayenne if you like. Add the peanuts and the peanut butter, and whisk until the peanut butter is fully incorporated.

5. To serve, reheat the soup, and ladle it into bowls. Top with the chopped cilantro. Serves 6.

*Recipe from Vegetarian Planet, Didi Emmons.

4 Responses to "Recipe Friday: African Tomato and Peanut Soup"

Mmmh! sounds really good 🙂

Ah, so you’re one of the few Europeans who likes peanut butter? 😉 I remember living in Denmark a few years ago with a bunch of Americans and Canadians, and they all missed their PB sandwiches. Hubby and I found a store that sold PB, but at a price, and in small jars… and we became wildly popular, just by having the information!

I’ll have to come to Finland and make the soup for you, Anne. 🙂

This recipe sounds fantastic and reminds me of an African Peanut that I love at the Colophon Cafe in Bellingham. The soup is healthy, filling and nutritious and wildly popular(!). For anyone who might be allergic to peanuts, I have found roasted sunflower spread to be the closest taste to peanut butter, and I use it in my cooking/baking all the time in its place. I love recipe Friday! What a great idea 🙂

Thanks, Brooke! 🙂 Yep, I’m going to have to make this one again really soon. Thanks, also, for the tip on sunflower spread — I’ve never tried it.

I figured it would be great to start the weekend with a fun, healthy recipe to try! (At least for those of us who love to cook. 😉 )

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