From Italy, zuppa di fagioli is often overlooked in favour of its more illustrious cousin, minestrone. This peasant soup, however, is full of flavour and can be vegetarian or not, depending on your preference.
2 - 14 oz (400 g) cans low-sodium cannellini beans
1 Tbsp (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
1 leek (white and light green parts), cleaned and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp (5 mL) fresh thyme leaves
1/2 tsp (2 mL) dried oregano
2 celery stalks, diced
1 carrot, diced
2 lbs (1 kg) spinach, trimmed and roughly chopped
2 ripe tomatoes, diced
4 cups (1 L) homemade or low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup (60 mL) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Put 1 can of beans with its liquid in blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Drain other can, rinsing and reserving beans, and discarding liquid.
Heat oil in large heavy-bottom pan over medium heat; add leek, garlic, thyme, and oregano. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until soft. Add celery, carrot, spinach, and tomato; cook for a further 2 to 3 minutes, or until spinach has wilted.
Stir puréed beans and stock into vegetable mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Add drained beans and stir until heated through. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Serve in warm bowls, topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Each serving contains: 335 calories; 20 g protein; 6 g total fat (2 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 53 g carbohydrates (5 g sugars, 12 g fibre); 206 mg sodium
Low in sodium, tomatoes are a great source of several vitamins and minerals, and are a good source of fibre. They contain vitamin C, which helps boost the immune system, as well as vitamins A and K. Tomatoes also provide lycopene, which helps fight free radicals, lowers cholesterol, prevents heart disease, and helps with age-related vision problems.
source: "International Soups", alive #360, October 2012
Serving saucy lentils in squash halves is a sure-fire way to elevate your plant-based menu. And, yes, the whole bowl is edible, skin and all. If desired, you can add dollops of Greek yogurt or sour cream. Spice of life Garam masala, a blend of spices traditionally used in Indian cooking, usually includes cardamom, black pepper, cloves, nutmeg, fennel, cumin, and coriander. It’s great on roasted meats and vegetables.
“Germans do potatoes in general very well,” says Canadian expat Chris Gilles, who now lives in Munich and has celebrated many an Oktoberfest there. “Knödel seem kind of rubbery. You don’t really think it’s potato when you first see it, but it’s tasty.” But he might be surprised to find that this alive -inspired version of Bavarian potato dumplings is made with a combination of potato and cauliflower, because as anyone who’s eaten cauliflower gnocchi knows, the low-carb vegetable is a great way to lighten up starch-heavy foods (and Biergarten menus). Happy Knödelfest! The original version of these snacks are so popular that it even gets its own food fest: Knödelfest, which happens in September in Austria, about a 1 1/2-hour drive from Munich. If alive threw a Knödelfest, these dumplings would definitely be on the menu, served simply as snacks with sliced radishes and fresh parsley or dill, or topped with butter, beer gravy, or mushroom sauce. The dumpling test You can test one dumpling by shaping it and then boiling it before shaping the rest. If the water is lower than a boil and it still falls apart, add more starch to the batter before shaping another ball and testing again.
This dark beer-marinated chicken uses the convection setting on your oven to create a crispy skinned bird. Convection cooking circulates air around the meat, crisping it like rotisserie without needing a spit or a lot of oil, similar to an air fryer (which you can also use!). If you don’t have a convection setting on your oven, you can simply bake the chicken for longer at the same temperatures as below, until a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh reads 165 F (74 C). You can use any dark beer, but our pick is, obviously, something German. Oktoberfest barbecue You can also grill the whole chicken on a barbecue—which makes for an impressive presentation and a gorgeously crispy bird—but it’s best to spatchcock it first (take out the backbone) so it cooks more evenly and quickly. Make it fast! If you don’t want to make an entire chicken—or if you want your dinner to cook faster—use this marinade (without stuffing the chicken cavity) on chicken breasts, thighs, or iron-rich chicken livers instead.
At Oktoberfest celebrations in Munich, there are always people walking around selling large pretzels, says Canadian expat Chris Gilles, who moved to the city in 2018. The large pieces of golden, twisted pretzel dough come topped with coarse salt for a savoury crunch with every bite. “They don’t come with any dipping sauce,” Gilles says, “but you could dip it in sauce if you had ordered something else”—say, the honey mustard or stone-ground mustard you might have with your bratwurst or sauerkraut balls. But don’t feel bad if you prefer to break from German tradition and dip them in caramel or tahini instead! There’s no need to flour a surface when rolling out your dough; the psyllium keeps it from sticking.