June 2002    Vol. 1   No. 6


We recently completed our first McDougall Program at the Flamingo Hotel and Spa in Santa Rosa, CA.  The chef, Ron MacDonald, did a fabulous job with the food and over the next few months I will be sharing some of his creations with you.  Everyone who attended the May 2002 program agreed that the soups were wonderful!  The recipe for the Tomato Basil soup got the most requests, so we’ll start with that one this month.

Preparation Time:  10 minutes
Cooking Time:  1 ½ hours
Servings:  6-8

1 onion, coarsely chopped
4-6 whole garlic cloves
1 cup fresh basil leaves (pressed down)
2  28 ounce can chopped tomatoes with their juice
½ cup water
1 ½ cups V-8 juice
several twists freshly ground pepper
1 cup soy or rice milk

Place all ingredients, except milk, in a large pot.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 ½ hours.  Puree in batches in a blender and return to pot.  Add soy or rice milk and reheat.  Do not boil.  Serve at once.

Hint:  This may be served as a first course, as a complete meal with a salad and some bread, or use as a topping for vegetables, potatoes or pasta.


I  have been making vegetarian chili for many years.  I usually start with dried beans and cook the chili for several hours to make a hearty, rich sauce.  However, sometimes I look for a delicious meal that doesn’t take hours to cook.   This is a chili that has been a winner with everyone that tries it.  The avocado topping and tofu sour cream are optional, as are the chips.   Sometimes I serve this over brown rice, that  cooks  while the chili is simmering.   This makes a hearty meal for four people, with no leftovers.  It also reheats well, so saving some for the next day’s lunch is an option.

Servings: 4
Preparation Time:  20 minutes
Cooking Time:  30 minutes

2 ½ cups vegetable broth
1 medium onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1   4-ounce can chopped green chilies
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1  15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
1  15-ounce can chopped tomatoes
2/3 cup quick cooking barley
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
dash salt

Options:  baked tortilla chips
Tofu sour cream
Avocado Salsa

Place ½ cup of the vegetable broth in a large pot.  Add onions, bell pepper and garlic.  Cook and stir frequently for 3 minutes.  Add green chilies, chili powder, cumin, and oregano.  Cook and stir for 2 minutes.  Add remaining broth, beans, tomatoes, and barley.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and cook for 10 minutes.  Uncover and cook for 15 minutes.  Stir in cilantro and salt to taste.   Serve over brown rice, if desired, or ladle into a bowl.   Add optional toppings as desired.

Hints:  Use some baked tortilla chips on the side of the chili or crumble over the top.  Use a tablespoon or two of tofu sour cream on the top and/or about ¼ cup of the avocado salsa.  (See recipes below).


2 medium avocados, peeled and diced
1  large, firm, ripe tomato, chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped, seeded, jalapeno pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
dash salt

Combine all ingredients and toss gently to mix. 


1 12.3 ounce package lite silken tofu, extra firm
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons sugar
dash salt

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.  Refrigerate at least 2 hours to allow flavors to blend.  Keeps in the refrigerator for about a week. 


This soup is wonderful served as a first course.  It is delicious plain or with a dollop of the Tofu Chile Cream stirred into it.

Servings:  6
Preparation Time:  10 minutes
Cooking Time:   15 minutes

4 1/3 cups vegetable broth
2 shallots, chopped
2 tablespoons unbleached white flour
4 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

Place 1/3 cup of the broth in a medium saucepan.  Add the shallots and cook and stir for about 2-3 minutes.  Stir in the flour and mix well.  Add the remaining broth, about ¼ cup at a time, stirring well, until the flour     is well mixed into the broth.   Add the corn and heat soup to boiling.  Reduce heat and cook for about 5 minutes.  Remove by cupfuls into a blender jar and process briefly until slightly smooth.  Return to pan and heat through.  Stir in cilantro just before serving.

Hint:  For a bit more heat and flavor, serve Tofu Chile Cream on the side so each person can add a dollop to their soup, if desired.


6-8 ounces extra-firm silken tofu
2 medium poblano chilies, roasted, skinned, and seeded
1 teaspoon minced garlic

Place all ingredients in a blender jar and process until smooth.  Scrape sides as necessary and repeat until well processed.  Place in a bowl and chill until needed.

Hint:  Roast chilies on a baking sheet about 6 inches from the broiler, turning as necessary to char all sides.  Place in a brown paper bag and close top.  Let cool for about 10 minutes.  Remove seeds and as much skin as possible.

2002 John McDougall All Rights Reserved

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