Earth Day is celebrated worldwide on April 22. Various events are held on this day to demonstrate people’s support for environmental protection. Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970. The Earth Day Network now coordinates the commemoration worldwide, with over 193 countries participating.

Vegetable Soup

(Pixabay / TanteLoe)

John McConnell, a peace activist, first proposed the concept of an Earth Day celebration during the UNESCO Conference in San Francisco in 1969. McConnell suggested setting a day to honor the earth and the concept of peace. On April 22, 1970, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson founded a separate Earth Day as an environmental teach-in. Earth Day originally focused on the United States, but Denis Hayes, the original coordinator in 1970, took it to the international stage and organized events in different countries.

The first Earth Day celebration in 1970 brought about 20 millions Americans out into the sunshine of spring, peacefully demonstrating for environmental reforms. Today, more than a billion people participate in the celebration of Earth Day, one of the largest secular holidays on the planet. Environmental groups have capitalized on the holiday. They institute policy changes to bring about environmental reforms and mobilize the public to adopt more earth-friendly habits.

Earth Day Vegetable Soup

In tribute to the holiday, soup lovers can celebrate with Earth Day Vegetable Soup. The addition of different vegetables to the soup honors the bounty of the earth. To save energy, prepare the soup in a slow cooker.

The beauty of this soup is that you can use whatever vegetables you have on hand. Start by adding the vegetables with the hardest texture because they cook longer. The more delicate vegetables should be added later. You can enrich the broth by adding some carrot juice and a little extra-virgin olive oil. Add chopped fresh tomatoes and herbs before the soup is served for a pungent garden-fresh taste.

Suggested ingredients:

  • 1 chopped yellow onion, large
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 chopped carrots
  • 1 chopped celery rib
  • 3 diced red potatoes
  •  ½ cup red, yellow, or orange chopped bell peppers
  • 6 cups of vegetable broth
  • 1 or 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh marjoram. (You can substitute dried marjoram.)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4-oz. green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 ½ cups cooked cannellini beans
  • 4 cups chopped spinach or chard, fresh
  • 6 quartered cherry tomatoes
  • ½ cup fresh carrot juice
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped

Combine the onion, garlic, celery, carrots, bell pepper, potatoes, and broth. Add marjoram and bay leaves. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook on high for 30 minutes or until carrots are tender.

Add the white beans, green beans, and yellow squash. Cook for another 10 to 20 minutes until the green beans are tender. Just before serving, remove the bay leaves and add the tomatoes, carrot juice, spinach, and olive oil. Stir in the fresh herbs. Adjust seasoning when necessary.