Split Pea Soup – A Vegan Pressure Cooker Comfort Food

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It’s starting to get cool out, so you know what that means! SOUP!
I love a bowl of soup in the fall or winter, and split pea is a crowd pleasing (though not horribly photogenic) star in my house.

Ingredients

2 pounds dried split peas
1 large onion, diced
6 carrots, peeled and sliced or 1 bag baby carrots
8 cups vegetable broth
2 cups non-dairy milk (or 2 more cups broth or water)
1 T liquid smoke
2 T olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
optional seasonings: 1/2 cup fresh chopped kale, 1/3 cup chopped basil, 4 minced garlic cloves

Process

If you have the time, you can sauté the onions and garlic until soft or caramelized and go from there. If not (as I did not last night), you can just throw it all in with the beans.

Add beans and sautéed or raw vegetables and remainder of ingredients except salt, pepper, and non-dairy milk to pressure cooker. Bring to high pressure. Cook for 10-12 minutes and then remove from burner to allow to naturally depressurize.

Pour in the non-dairy milk and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with fresh bread, salad, or fruit.  Yummy.

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“Cheesy” Vegan Pressure Cooker Mashed Potato Soup

While sometimes soup seems like a winter food, we like soup and salad dinners all year around. I’ve posted a mashed potato soup recipe before, and this is very similar, with a more cheesy spin.

This soup is pretty thick and rich, so if you like a thinner soup, you may wish to add more broth or soy/rice milk.  The recipe serves six, so adjust accordingly.

Cheesy Vegan Mashed Potato Soup

5 lb potatoes peeled and diced
3 stalks celery diced
1 sweet onion diced
3 cups diced carrots
2 T olive oil
7-8 cups vegetable broth
1 cups unsweetened soy/rice milk
4 cloves minced garlic optional
1 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1 T turmeric
Sea salt and pepper to taste

Add olive oil and onion to the bottom of the pressure cooker and sauté on medium heat until the onions begin to carmelize.

Once they have, add the potatoes, celery, and broth.

Place the carrots in a small stainless or glass bowl and place on top of the potatoes.  Add several T of water to the carrot bowl. You can also use a pressure cooker steamer basket if you have one, but you may need to reduce the broth some to keep the carrots from floating out, and then add more after.

Close lid and bring to high pressure.  Maintain at high pressure for 5 minutes and then remove from heat and allow pressure to dissipate naturally.

Once the pressure has released, remove the lid and take out the bowl of carrots. Be careful, as it will be quite hot.
Using an immersion blender, or mashing by hand,gently mash potatoes to texture desired.

Add cooked carrots, nutritional yeast, soy/rice milk, turmeric, salt, and pepper and stir.  Return to stove (without lid) and heat on low, stirring often, for a few moments.

We like it with salad and some bread.

Black Bean Mexican Mole Chili

Image by Steve Snodgrass on Flickr

We love chili. Generally, I make a pinto or kidney bean version, but this week we had it with black beans and some of the ingredients switched up a bit. What follows is a pressure cooker recipe, but you could certainly do this on the stove top by soaking beans ahead and adjusting cooking time. Sorry for the no pictures of the finished product, but chili is not very photogenic.

Black Bean Mexican Mole Chili

2 lb dried black beans
1 large sweet onion diced
4 stalks celery diced
1/2 pound carrots chopped
1 green pepper diced
1 red pepper diced
2 jalapenos diced
1 large can tomato puree
6-8 cups vegetable “chicken” broth
1/4 cup of cocoa powder
4 T cumin
2 T chili powder
1 T turmeric
3 T olive oil
Salt to taste

Place olive oil in bottom of pressure cooker and heat on medium. Add onions and sauté 3-4 minutes. Add remaining vegetables and sauté an additional 5 minutes. Add all of the dry spices and mix, letting them coat the vegetables. Continue to cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add remaining ingredients. Mix. Place lid on pressure cooker and bring up to high pressure. Cook for 15 minutes and then allow pressure to come down naturally. If you like your beans more al dente, decrease cooking time to 10 minutes. When pressure releases, check for taste and adjust seasoning where needed.

Serve with sour cream (soy or regular) and dairy or soy cheese if desired. Tortilla chips or cornbread are nice accompaniments.