Serves 10 people.
1 head of garlic, separated into cloves, peeled and chopped
1 white onion, chopped (among the most potent immune boosting onions: New York Bold, Western Yellow, Northern Red, and Shallots, according to Rebecca Katz of The Cancer Fighting Kitchen)
2 T organic expeller pressed Sunflower or Safflower oil
1 bunch (12 oz.) each young kale and chard, or 1.5 lbs. mixed other leafy greens such as spinach, Napa cabbage, escarole, rapini, green cabbage, or broccoli
1 lb. Organic russet potatoes, scrubbed and diced (I keep the skins on)
2 cups of water
1 2x5 inch piece of kombu, rinsed under running water
salt and pepper to taste
8 cups vegetable broth
3 T apple cider vinegar
Saute the garlic and onion in the oil in a large non-stick pan until they begin to change color. Rinse and pat dry the greens, trim away any tough stems and ribs and rip the leaves with your hands until they are in uniform 1x1 inch pieces. If using kale, be sure to massage it for at least 5-7 minutes. Kale has a tough cell wall and massaging it breaks that down improving digestibility and reducing the bitter after taste. Shred the greens into thin strips with a sharp knife. If you are using a sturdy green like kale or escarole, add it to the pan when the garlic starts to turn golden brown and sauté together for about 2 minutes, stirring often.
Combine the diced potatoes, water, kombu salt and pepper to taste, and vegetable broth in a large soup pot and bring it to a boil. When the potatoes are tender, add the garlic and onion mixture, all the greens, and the vinegar. Simmer for about 30 minutes, then taste and correct the seasonings if needed.
Serve warm to hot with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and if you like, dried red chile flakes, and/or some feta cheese crumbles.
This soup is both delicious and provides your immune system an enormous boost. According to Dr. Joel Fuhrman, garlic and greens are two of the top anti-viral, anti-biotic, anti-fungal foods on the planet. Combined, as in this recipe, they make for a great meal when you are teetering on the edge of catching the flu or just want to ward off a cold (or vampires)! The best part is that you can use whatever greens you have around the house – mix and match or just buy what you like best.
According to Anna Thomas, author of The New Vegetarian Epicure, and the original source for this recipe, 2-3 different kinds of greens provide the best flavor, e.g. mixing stronger and milder flavors together.
Monica Medrek, adapted from Anna Thomas' Greens and Garlic Soup Recipe.