This soup recipe is a tasty adaptation of a southwestern classic. When zucchini becomes over-abundant in the late summer garden, this is one way to use up a fair amount of it! Serve as an introduction to a southwestern-style meal of soft tacos or vegan quesadillas.
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 medium red bell pepper, finely diced
- 1 cup chopped ripe tomato
- 7 to 8 cups diced zucchini (about 1/2 inch dice)
- 1 teaspoon each: dried oregano, ground cumin, and chili powder
- 1 1/2 cups plain unsweetened nondairy milk (rice milk or
almond milk work well), or as needed
- 2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro or parsley
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced for garnish, optional
Heat the oil in a medium skillet. Add the onion and garlic and sauté over medium heat until the onion is translucent. Add the bell pepper and continue to sauté until it’s tender-crisp. Add the tomatoes and sauté for 2 minutes or so longer, just until they’ve softened somewhat.
Place the zucchini dice in a large soup pot with about an inch of water. Cover and steam over medium-low heat until just tender, stirring occasionally. Remove 1 1/2 cups of the zucchini dice and set aside.
Transfer half of the skillet mixture and the remaining zucchini to a food processor and process, in batches if necessary, until smoothly pureed.
Return the puree to the soup pot along with the reserved zucchini dice, the seasonings, and enough nondairy milk to achieve a medium-thick consistency. Stir in the lemon juice.
Season to taste with salt and pepper, then bring to a gentle simmer. Cook over low heat for 10 minutes. Stir in half of the cilantro. Top each serving with a sprinkling of the reserved cilantro, as well as the optional scallions and a dollop of Vegan Sour Cream or Cashew Cream, if you’d like.