In the past few months, the elderly woman I care for has lost much of her appetite. She eats small amounts and sometimes refuses food altogether. One of my solutions to this problem is to make extremely flavorful meals and to pack as much nutrition as possible in, so what she does eat is healthy and filling.

Now that the weather has gotten colder, I’m also concerned with keeping her warm and comfortable. After some experimentation, I’ve discovered that she loves orange soup and will eat a full bowl of it. On the days I serve it, I can almost forget that she has a waning appetite.

Here’s my recipe for hearty orange soup, so you can try it yourself:

 

Ingredients

 

1 onion, chopped

2 large sweet potatoes, cubed

3 carrots, sliced

Large chunk of pumpkin, cubed

Salt and pepper to taste (according to the senior’s diet)

2 tsp. nutmeg

Sautee the onion till golden. Place the rest of the vegetables and the spices in the pot and add enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil. Cook on a medium flame until vegetables are soft, about an hour. Let the soup cool, then blend with an immersion blender or food processor until smooth and creamy. Add spices if necessary. Can be served with a dollop of sour cream or with croutons.

My patient eats the soup by itself, but I like to add a crusty piece of bread for myself. I often double the soup recipe and freeze some, so I can take it out on an especially cold or rainy day. There’s nothing as comforting as a bowl of hot orange soup, a cozy sweater and piece of warm bread on a gray and gloomy day.