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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 25 April 2015
20 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 25 APRIL 2015 DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM The hot ‘n’ easy Beat the cold weather with a steaming, vitamin-filled bowl of soup NELLY SKOUFATOGLOU Soup. The liquid nourishment held in high regard by almost every known culture and civilisation is also much loved by Greek cuisine for more than one reason. Although soup is less appealing during hot summer weather, it remains one of the most favoured culinary selections when it comes to nutritious and healthy, not to mention comforting foods. Now that Easter with its meat, alcohol and chocolate galore is behind us, why not switch to detox mode, which helps our system function better and shields against cold weather. Soup is a fine source of fibre and protein, combining ingredients such as meat and vegetables and sometimes good fat and carbohydrates as well. Cooking a tasty soup isn't rocket science and there are very few possibilities of things going wrong. A warm spicy soup can wake us up and can get sluggish digestion going while boosting our metabolism. Soups are classified into clear and thick, or as the French prefer, in five subcategories depending on the method of thickening. The established names for clear soups are bouillon and consommé, while the thick ones are divided into purées, bisques and veloutés. All freshly cooked soups are healthy, yet canned soups are considered to hold a high risk for our health as they contain large amounts of sodium, which is detrimental to the liver, and MSG (monosodium glutamate), a flavourenhancing chemical that is toxic to the kidneys. There is not much effort, though, in making homemade soup, which is easily refrigerated for future meals, preserving its significant health benefits. Soup is also very economical and adaptable to any household. However pro-vegetarian chefs tend to be lately, we must acknowledge that gelatin stock from bones and cartilage contains hydrophilic colloids, attracting digestive juices which help accomplish an efficient and fast digestion. Because gelatin attracts liquids even after it has been cooked, soup is highly recommended by doctors worldwide as therapeutic in the treatment of digestive and intestinal disorders. Physicians and dietitians promote soup to help fight hyper-acidity conditions, indigestion, colitis and Crohn's disease, not to mention cancer, anaemia, ulcers, diabetes, and certain Trahanosoupa (trahana soup) Fasolada (bean soup) With fasolada, all you need for a perfect and highly nutritious meal is warm sourdough bread and olives. Ingredients: 500g dried white beans 3 carrots, sliced 1 bunch of celery, coarsely chopped 2 medium sized onions, chopped 1 1/2 cups canned crushed tomatoes 1 bunch of parsley 1 chilli pepper 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 2-4 cloves of garlic salt and ground pepper to taste Method: Rinse and pick over the beans, then soak them overnight and drain. Add water again (enough to cover the beans) and bring the pot to a boil. Put in all of the remaining ingredients except the salt and simmer for about an hour and a half. Check if the beans are tender and the soup has thickened, adding more water if needed. Then add salt and pepper with the raw olive oil and stir. Leave the soup to 'sit' for a few minutes and serve garnished with a few leaves of parsley. This traditional Greek pasta soup is the perfect shield for the winter chill There are two kinds of trahana, the sweet, which is soaked in milk and the sour, which contains yoghurt. The flavours may also vary according to the place of origin and method of drying. Luckily you can find trahana at any Greek deli shop. Ingredients: 1 cup trahana 4 cups of water or vegetable stock 180g feta cheese, crumbled 1 cup milk 1 tsp butter Method: Add the trahana in a pot filled with the cold water, and wait for it to come to a boil. Then reduce heat and add the butter while you simmer for 1020 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Add the milk and 5 minutes later add the crumbled cheese in the mix whilst stirring, always making sure the trahana doesn't stick on the bottom. Cook for a maximum of 5 mins more and remove from heat. Allow the soup to rest for a few minutes before placing it in bowls. muscular hypertrophies. Moreover, the Mayo clinic has shared several modern researches confirming that stock helps to treat urinary and kidney infections amongst a long list of infectious diseases. Stock also contains soluble components of cartilage and collagen, highly beneficial to people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and other joint problems. To conclude, soup is also a great appetite suppressant that can fill us up easily, therefore ideal for weightloss. Let’s top up our vitamin quotient with some of the most appealing soups for this coming season. A nice twist would also be to add some fresh tomato puree before the feta, instead of milk. Fasolada, the national soup of Greece. Add a dash of lemon juice on top for a tangier taste. You can serve it with croutons and/or crushed garlic with freshly ground pepper and parsley.
18 April 2015
2 May 2015