Scott Brick fans! You are going to LOVE this post! I am sharing Scott's favorite soup. He requests it every week and can't get enough of it. 

Those of you who wonder if I have surrended my teeth will  be pleased to discover that I am, at long last, featuring another non blended soup! My father and I have had a 30 year debate about the virtues of chunk versus blended soups. We have agreed to disagree and acknowledge that there is room in the belly for both!

Scott prefers chunky soups over blended soups, and this blend is his all-time favorite. We switch up the pistou and the vegetables every week. But, this is the mix we like the best. Scott is so obsessed with semi-dried tomatoes that my mum and dad bring jars over from Australia by the case load when they come to visit. 

So, I thought it deserved a mention here. You know when you have been making a recipe for so long you take it for granted? It's kind of how I feel about this soup. It is like my little white t shirt that sits in my drawer, and makes regular appearances, but is never the star attraction. Well, I decided it was right time this soup had it's moment in the spotlight! 

I got a version of this recipe from my dear friend Kris, who you might remember from the incredible Date and Walnut Loaf. If you haven't tried that recipe, you are missing out on a slice of MAGIC! Kris is one of the best cooks I know. Many of my favourite staple recipes have come from times I have spent in her amazing kitchen. As with most of her simple recipes, this vegetable soup is simple, super healthy, and bursting with flavour. Those of you who are wondering, "what the heck is pistou?" are not alone. When I served it to Scott, he questioned me by asking, "are you sure you don't mean pesto?" Pistou / Pesto....it's all pretty much the same thing!

Pistou is a cold sauce made out of crusing basil, garlic and olive oil in a mortar and pestle. This simple rustic sauce originated in Italy and parts of France, and later versions included cheeses like Parmesan, which was very similar to what we think of as pesto today. I have taken this general idea and made a vegan pesto out of sundried tomatoes and macadamias. It might not be very traditional, but it tastes downright fabulous! 

Pistou is one of the quickest ways to inject a huge burst of flavour to an otherwise bland soup. Not that this soup base isn't tasty on it's own. It is. You just need to add some seasoning to give it a bit of ooomph. However, a dollop of this pistou mixed in with the soup mix turns this soup from simple to sublime! For the soup base, you can use any mixture of legumes and vegetables that you like. I mix it up constantly. 

I will say, that it is best to serve this soup by just ladling the soup over the dollop of pistou and allowing your guests to mix it in themselves, or it may look like you are serving up a bowl of vomit. Gross, but true. You will see what I mean when you make this recipe. Once you mix it, it is not the prettiest looking bowl I have ever shared. But what it lacks in looks it makes up for in flavour. Sensational! 

Scott swears he could live on this soup, and wasn't put off by the look of it at all. But you have been warned. Enjoy. 

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Scott Brick’s Vegetable Soup with Sundried Tomato Pistou

For the soup:

  • 8 cups vegetable broth (I use Massel)
  • 2 cups finely chopped brown onion (about 2 medium onions)
  • 2 cups of red skinned potatoes peeled and diced
  • 2 cups fresh tomatoes seeded and diced
  • 1 cup cooked cannellini beans
  • 1 cup cooked garbanzo beans
  • 1 cup cooked kidney beans or azuki beans
  • 1 cup green beans trimmed halved
  • 1 cup small zucchini diced roughly
  • ½ cup chopped fresh basil
  • 2 Tbsp cold pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh garlic
  • ½ tsp Celtic sea salt

For the Pistou:

  • 1 cup diced and seeded ripe tomatoes
  • 1 cup raw macadamias
  • ½ cup sun dried tomatoes
  • ½ cup firmly packed fresh basil leaves with stems removed
  • 6 Tbsp cold pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh garlic
  • ¼ tsp Celtic sea salt

Makes 1 ½ cups of pistou

  1. Saute the garlic and onions with the olive oil and ½ tsp sea salt until just translucent. 
  2. Add in the potatoes and sauté for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add in the beans, zucchini, tomatoes, basil, and vegetable broth and bring to the boil. Simmer for about 15 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through.
  4. While the soup is cooking make the pistou:
  5. Throw all of the ingredients in your food processor or high-speed blender (I use a Vitamix) and pulse until well combined. You can create a smooth consistency or keep it rustic. Whatever you prefer.
  6. Tweak flavours to taste and set aside.
  7. About 5 minutes before the soup is ready, throw in the legumes.
  8. To serve:
  9. Place a generous dollop of pistou in the bottom of each bowl.
  10. Ladle soup over pistou.
  11. Top with some chopped fresh bail or parsley.
  12. Stir well and devour. YUMMO!
  13. **Note: if your pistou is rustic the soup will not look so gorgeous when stirred. But it tastes delicious! 
  14. Serves 8.

Tips!

Avoid sticky garlic

When chopping garlic into fine pieces, it can leave you in a sticky situation. The garlic sticks to your knife, your fingers, and the board. To avoid this – simply rub a tiny drop of olive oil onto the blade of your knife and a few drops onto the garlic cloves. The oil coats the garlic and stops it from sticking.

Oh gee, this soup is super great and a wonderful way to stay warm on a day like today (It’s very cold in Los Angeles right now) You’ve added so many wonderful flavors, I love the combination of different beans, just super. I am new to the vegan world and just made this for my kids and husband, we will definitely be back for more.

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I am so pleased you and your family enjoyed this soup. This is a new vegan’s lifesaver!

This is really delicious. It’s hard to come up with new ways to make a hearty, vegetable soup interesting! I made a pot this morning and it was almost gone by dinner time. It was definitely a hit, thank you very much.

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LOL! Love it!
I am glad you enjoyed…..the whole pot :)

I agree.
This soup is interesting.
We really enjoyed it. Thankyou.

It is a bit different isn’t it.
Glad you enjoyed it.
A dollap of pistou is a fantastic way to jazz up any soup.

This intrigues me.
I have not had a pistou soup before, but will be giving this a go.

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Then you are in for a treat! Enjoy :)

I literally just blended up the pistou.

It. Is. Amazing.

Now I’m gonna serve myself a bowl of the pistou + soup. :)

I want to make every kind of pistou in the world now!

Thanks so much for this recipe, Tess!!!! <3

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P.S. Oh! And I didn’t have any macadamias on hand so I used cashews instead - thought they would closely mimic the creaminess of the macadamia as well as cashews can!

So, anyone examining this recipe should note that cashews work just fine :)

Thanks for sharing that cashews worked really well for you too :)

LOL! I Love it too. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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