Who doesn’t love beets? Roasted, steamed, or puréed, these root vegetables are like rubies from the earth—easily transformed and yet always nutritious and grounding. While red beets usually take center stage, their golden cousins can be a better choice for a number of reasons. They tend to be softer (meaning less cooking time) and a bit milder in flavor (meaning more ways to pair them); they stain less (good if you have a white kitchen); and they’re a better choice when you’re in the second half of your cycle, known as the luteal phase. (But if you make this soup with red beets, it’s great during the follicular phase, as it supports the generation of new blood during and after menstruation.) Plus, the golden variety affords this soup a plethora of health benefits: their color alone means they have more immune boosters like vitamin C, vitamin A, beta-carotene, potassium, and lycopene. Topaz over rubies? That may not be your preference in gemstone, but when it comes to beets, you’re good as gold either way. Like most soups, this is great for making in big batches to freeze or simply to have leftovers on hand in the days that follow. Add a bit of water or plant milk when reheating the soup, given its already thick consistency.
This recipe is part of a one-day meal plan from Root & Nourish. See the rest of the meals here.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
2 large golden beets, quartered
1 large yellow onion, halved
1 whole head garlic
1 tbsp coconut oil
1/2 cup dried yellow split peas
1/2 cup dried red lentils
1/2 cup almond milk
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp whole cumin seeds, or 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, plus more for garnish
1/2 teaspoon harissa
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
2 to 4 soaked dates
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
- Heat the oven to 375°F.
- Combine the beets and onion in a small baking dish. Slice off the top of the head of garlic to expose the cloves and place it (yes, the whole head, with the papery skin) cut-side down in the baking dish. Evenly coat with the coconut oil. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes, or until the beets are soft when pierced with a knife. When the garlic bulb is cool enough to handle, squeeze until the cloves easily pop out of the papery skins; they should be very soft.
- Meanwhile, combine the split peas and lentils in a large pot or Dutch oven with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer. Cover and cook, stirring every once and while so they don’t stick to the bottom of the pan, for 30 minutes, or until very soft. Add the roasted beets, onion, and garlic, and the milk, nutritional yeast, cumin, harissa, cayenne, and dates. Stir to combine, then blend with an immersion blender, adding up to 3/4 cup water as you go to reach the desired consistency.
- To serve, ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the parsley and a sprinkle of cumin (ground or whole seeds), if desired.
Adapted from ROOT & NOURISH: An Herbal Cookbook for Women’s Wellness by Abbey Rodriguez and Jennifer Kurdyla. Copyright © 2021 Simon & Schuster, Inc. Reprinted by permission of Tiller Press, a Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.