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 African Peanut Soup 
 
The following is one in an ongoing series of columns entitled The Nut Gourmet by . View all columns in series
Richly flavored with peanuts and lightly spiced with a seasoning combination that hints of far away places, this hearty soup just might entice you to make an entire meal of it. This is one of my very favorite easy, no-fail recipes.

Peanuts are not really nuts at all. They belong to the legume family. Because they have a similar nutritional profile as nuts, they are frequently categorized as nuts. Peanuts contain high levels of heart-protective resveratrol, the same antioxidant found in red wine. In fact, one ounce of dry roasted peanuts contain more resveratrol than two ounces of red wine, which doctors often prescribe to their heart patients. Peanuts are also a good source of protein and dietary fiber. Natural peanut butter contains the same nutritional qualities and reaps the same health benefits as whole peanuts.

Yield: 6 servings

  • 2 pounds Roma or regular tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 5 cups water
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, minced (divided)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

  • 2 cups finely chopped Swiss chard or spinach
  • 3/4 cup unsalted chunky peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup crushed roasted peanuts

  1. Combine the tomatoes, onions, garlic, and olive oil in a large stockpot and cook and stir over high heat for about 5 minutes, or until the tomatoes are softened and the onions are transparent. Turn the heat down to a simmer.
  2. Add the water, tomato sauce, 3 tablespoons of the mint leaves, chili powder, cumin, salt, and red pepper flakes and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Add the Swiss chard and peanut butter and cook 3 to 4 minutes, stirring constantly to distribute the peanut butter. The soup will thicken slightly.
  4. To serve, spoon the soup into bowls and garnish with a pinch or two of the remaining mint leaves and the crushed peanuts.

      
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 About The Author
With a focus on healthy eating, compassion for animals, and environmental consciousness, her vegan journey led Zel Allen to partner with her husband, Reuben, to publish Vegetarians in Paradise. Their online publication......moreZel Allen
 
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