Saturday, February 16, 2008

“No Croutons Required” and a Delicious Splurge

Tinned Tomatoes and Lisa’s Kitchen are hosting a monthly blogging event called “No Croutons Required.”

This month’s theme is vegetarian soup and my entry is:

Cabbage Soup with Chickpeas and Oats

This delicious soup can be ready in 30 minutes, although like most soups, it tastes even better the next day. The oats add creamy thickness and a sweet, nutty flavor. Since it is winter, I’ve used canned tomatoes and dried herbs.


1 small head green cabbage, shredded
1 medium onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
1 (15 oz.) can fire roasted tomatoes, chopped
3 cloves minced garlic
6 cups vegetable broth
1 t. dried basil
2 t. dried parsley
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. ground coriander
½ t. dried rosemary
½ t. dried thyme
½ t. dill seed
½ t. dried red pepper flakes
1 (15 oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
½ c. oats (I used 5 minute oats)
1 T. red wine or cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste


In a large soup pot, combine cabbage, onion, carrots, tomatoes, garlic, broth, and herbs. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in chickpeas, oats, vinegar, and salt & pepper. Cover and simmer 5 more minutes. Serve hot.

It’s cold and rainy and this soup was perfect for lunch today.

So what was my delicious splurge? FRESH mangosteen! Importation of these yummy fruits was illegal until recently and fortunately for me, the only market in Texas to now offer them has a location here in Austin. Mangosteens are highly nutritious and have long been used in Asian cultures as curatives. I think strawberry orange is a good description of their taste. I photo-documented my first taste experience because I’m assuming most of you have not eaten these either. (I think Amey and Emilie have.)

Here’s the package of 4 next to a can of coconut milk so you can get an idea of its size.

Here’s the first one, the tester, the one with a rind of thick leather. A clerk at the market warned me that the pink juice stains.

I noticed it has a lovely flowered bottom!

The clerk also told me how to get to the edible part. Run a paring knife through the rind around the equator of the fruit, lift off the top, then pull out the segments.

The brown spots on the segments are your clue to where any seeds are. Not every segment contains a seed.

Yes, I splurged. I paid $10 for four little fruits. I had to work hard to get to the edible segments. They are not at all filling and they stain. But they are delicious like nothing I’ve eaten before. So they were worth every penny. Perhaps mangosteen juice would be a better investment next time....

Austin is full of excitement as Uno, a delightful beagle from here, won Best in Show at Westminster. And also, my favorite all vegan macrobiotic organic restaurant, Casa de Luz, is featured in this month’s VegNews.

Oh, I also splurged on this.

I haven’t eaten any yet, but I’m sure it’s divine!


Ruby Red said...

Mangosteen! I used to work at Smoothie King, and they have a mangosteen smoothie there (it's okay, made with mangosteen concentrate). I've never seen the actual fruit though!

Arrggggh - that was an attempt to put into words what I feel about your mint dark chocolate bar. (It was meant to be a growl of desire, but words failed, haha.) Mint and dark chocolate belong together. They just do. Let us know if this brand is worth buying!

Anonymous said...

Crazy, I've never heard of mangosteen before.

Anonymous said...

Hi - I've been catching up on your posts. Everything looks so good and it's nice to splurge a little. For now, I have to live vicariously through your food (at least until I get a job and a routine set up with my mom).

How is your dad? I've been lifting him up in prayer as God brings him to mind. I hope all is well with him and you.

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

I've never had a mangosteen before... now I want to try one!

Tofu Mom (AKA Tofu-n-Sprouts) said...

Oh I have heard so much about mangosteens but never seen one opened up. What a valuable service you have provided, satisfying my curiosity! Somehow I always imagined they'd look like a pomegranate inside!!

Monika K said...

Soup looks great but that minty chocolate looks even more divine!

Liz Ranger (Bubble Tea for Dinner) said...

those mangosteens are so cool! my first thought when I saw the opened one was "woah, it looks like a head of garlic!" :D

your soup looks so wintery and yum, too. I've never tried oats in soup, but I love both things, I'll have to give it a try!

Sheree' said...

Mangosteen's are a fruit I have never heard of. I will have to check out Whole Foods next time I am there and see if they exist here in Southern California. Now I am off to make some soup. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

Lori- the Pleasantly Plump Vegan said...

mint + chocolate = Heaven

Jackie said...

I hear mangosteen is very healthy. We haven't seen them here yet but will keep my eye out in case they pop up somewhere.

Thanks for the soup recipe, winter just around the corner now so I have started collecting all the great Vegan soup recipes on the blogs I visit :)

Vegan_Noodle said...

Mangosteens look tasty.. and if they are taste like strawberries + orange that's even better!! Did you eat them all plain?

Ashasarala said...

I coulda used some of that soup earlier this morning. It's a holiday and of course my office was open. To top it all off, it was rainy and chilly. Soup for breakfast prolly would have gotten me going a lot quicker!

Why were mangosteens illegal here in the first place? They look so cute and yummy. I would love to throw them in the juicer. I can just imagine all the nutritious benefits come from them!

Amey said...

I want a fresh mangosteen! No, I haven't ever had one. I had some cool weird fruits in India, and I thought that thing I blogged about might have been a mangosteen (looks very similar from the outside, but was much bigger)... but it turned out to be a palmyra fruit (?!). The mangosteen looks and sounds great. I'd heard that it was now legal to import them, but I haven't seen them anywhere. I don't at all blame you for your big splurge.

Also, it's been a few years since I purchased a Divine brand bar, but back then, they were totally insanely fantastic. Be sure to give us a review!

xo Amey

LizNoVeggieGirl said...

your soup entry looks so comforting and delicious - it'll be the best entry, for sure!!

okay, the mangosteen HAS to be the most intriguing thing I have EVER seen - worth the splurge, for sure!!

I had no idea that Uno is from Austin - how fun!! I was quite happy to see the little guy win - especially since he made history!

erica said...

A splurge on fruit is always worth it. I love those kiwiberries.

urban vegan said...

Good food is worth slurging for. Esp. mangosteens--I only ever tasted them once--in China--where they were imported from India. They were amazing, I think it's funny how they look like little garlic cloves, but taste so sweet & succulent.

Soup looks tasty--I love lcear soups like this one.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

The soup sounds lovely! I've been wanting to buy that chocolate bar, I keep seeing it around town!

Carolann said...

Mangosteen! I just started to use XanGo and it's been working miracles! It would be so cool to actually buy a mangosteen fruit itself though!

Emilie said...

I'm terribly jealous of your mangosteen! I have never had one in the States but I remember them fondly from my childhood in Asia. Yum.

Jennifer White said...

Thank you for the delicious soup recipe. I tried it with just a bit of variation - subbed lemon juice for the vinegar and rice for the oats. It was fabulous!

Rose said...

I've always wanted to try a mangosteen! It's so great to live in Austin, although I have never been to Central Market or Casa de Luz.

affectioknit2 said...

That cabbage soup sure looks yummy - I'll have to try it...

Kati said...

Wow that mangosteen really looks intriguing!

I am definitely copying down your soup recipe - it looks like the perfect thing to warm up with while winter is still hanging around.

It's been awhile, and it's nice to visit your blog again!

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Haha you're lucky to never have liked that disgusting substance known as cheese! I used to love it... but now even the smell of it makes me feel sick.

Thanks for the sweet comment on my post :o).

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

It was good to met the mangosteen, I hadn't heard of it before!
And that chocolate will just be gorgeous, I know it!

bazu said...

Fresh mangosteen!!! How awesome. Totally worthy splurge- I would have done the same! Now I can drool at your photos and daydream about the day I'll get to taste some, too! =)

tx-honeysuckle said...

I just found out 6 months ago there will be mangosteens here in houston they got here thursday,they werent supposed to b here till April. My husband is taking me and the kids this afternoon. I have been waiting for them to be allowed n2 the US ever I had one that was smuggled in from canada about 9 yrs ago. SWEET!

tx-honeysuckle said...

I just called central and they are out! They said they dont know when they will get more, so the trip out there is off. Figures.
Oh well guess ill just keep calling them to find out when.

aTxVegn said...

tx-h: Oooh, sorry! Keep trying because they are so worth it!

- Diann