I knew talking about our updated fireplace would get you to come visit. :) And while you’re here, you might as well check out this amazingly delicious and flavorful soup I’m sharing with you, too (sneaky, aren’t I? :)). I know, you’re probably thinking soup season is coming to an end, but you’re talking to the girl who just got a new fireplace…I’m going to enjoy these last few weeks of winter as much as I can!
While I’m certainly excited about this soup (seriously, so good! Philip and I both went for seconds on it), I have to admit, I’m with you guys—I’m probably more excited about this new fireplace makeover right now. We just had the stone go up this past Friday and cleaned up from all the drywall dust and put the room back together on Saturday (seriously, that dust landed in places I didn’t even knew existed!), so you’re seriously getting a first glimpse!
Before and after pictures are always my favorite. Here’s the before. Not bad, but not something that we really liked either.
It almost feels like a different room now. Philip and I are so pleased with how everything turned out. We know this house probably won’t be our “forever home,” but we’re already wishing we could take this fireplace with us whenever we do move.
But for now, I’m going to keep just admiring it every moment I can get. :)
So now that you saw the fireplace, let’s talk about this soup. Seriously, though, I’m pretty excited about this soup, too. Since I don’t post as many recipes on here anymore (#lifehappened), I make sure the ones I do post are top notch!
This Spicy Peanut & Sweet Potato Soup has so much good flavor, with the star spices being the cumin and turmeric. If you’ve never had these spices before, this is a good recipe to ease yourself into trying them. They don’t overpower at all. The peanuts that are cooked with the sweet potatoes give this soup an extra bit of texture and crunch that makes it so satisfying. And, if you know me, then you know I love peanut butter. This soup has just enough added to the soup at the end to give it an extra boost of the peanut flavor. A little heat is there from the jalapeño and fire roasted tomatoes, but is definitely not spicy spicy. I can’t handle much heat, so I kept it pretty mild. If you want more spice, you can always add in more jalapeño.
The kale and sweet potatoes add to the heartiness of the soup without actually having any meat in it. Looking to make more meatless meal recipes for your family that don’t leave you hungry in a half hour? This is a winner!
We paired this soup with some freshly baked sourdough bread, which was perfect for soaking up the leftover bits at the bottom of the bowl. This is totally optional, but if you have some good, quality bread on hand, I’d highly recommend having a little with the soup.
Which brings me to my next topic: My current obsession with making sourdough bread. Haha. If you remember in one of my most recent posts, I mentioned that I was working on making my own starter and was going to attempt making my own sourdough with it. To be honest, I almost gave up on my starter, but it finally pulled through! I blame the cold weather for the slow progress, but once I made some tweaks to what I was doing, after about 3 weeks of regularly feeding the starter (talk about delayed gratification!), I was confident with my starter abilities. :) To bring you up to speed in the sourdough bread making world, the starter is just flour and water, fed with more flour and water to help the yeast from the air and flour grow and develop…simple, but not necessarily easy (as I quickly learned).
As soon as my starter was ready, it turned out that we were going to be gone for the weekend visiting my in-laws (and believe me, this is a weekend project if you’re working full-time somewhere that’s not at home). Thankfully, they were happy to have me lug all my baking supplies to their house and attempt to make the bread there. They were rewarded with delicious bread at the end of the day! Let’s just say, I was utterly delighted that I had actually made bread from just the minimal beginnings of just water and flour. Wheee!
Three weeks later, I’ve been practicing making sourdough every weekend since then. I have a long ways to go still, but I can say that it’s tasted delicious each time and I’m still just as amazed with the whole process as I was the first time. And as far as my husband is concerned, he’s totally fine with the results and the many loaves of bread I’ve been pulling out of the oven recently. :)
So here we are, a fireplace with a facelift in a space that feels like home, a soup that allows you to embrace these last couple weeks of coldness, and some bread to appreciate the simple things in life. Life is good.
Spicy Peanut & Sweet Potato Soup
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1/2 of a jalapeño, minced and seeds removed (for a spicier soup, mince a full jalapeño)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1 (14-oz) can fire roasted tomatoes
- 1 (14-oz) can light coconut milk
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 cup chopped peanuts
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
- 3 cups chopped kale, stems removed
- Cilantro and peanuts for topping
- Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat and add the onion and jalapeño. Sauté until soft and fragrant. Add the garlic at the end and sauté for an additional 30 seconds.
- Add the sweet potatoes to the mixture to brown the sweet potato slightly.
- Next, add the coconut milk, water, spices, and peanuts. Bring to a boil, then turn heat down to low and let the soup simmer until sweet potatoes are fork-tender.
- Stir in the peanut butter and kale. Let this simmer until everything is thick and creamy. Serve into bowls and top with more peanuts and chopped cilantro.
Adapted slightly from: Pinch of Yum