Hi, I'm Kim

Hi, I’m Kim Christensen, M.Om., Dipl.OM, L.Ac. I’m a licensed acupuncturist, herbalist, and owner of Constellation Acupuncture & Healing Arts in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Back before going to school and becoming a healthcare practitioner, Affairs of Living was my creative outlet while healing from chronic health issues. These days, I'm in a new phase of life, and this website is no longer updated.

Want to stay up to date? Check out my new website www.constellationacu.com.

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Unless otherwise noted, all recipes on this blog are free of gluten, peanuts, soy, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, shellfish, cane sugar, oranges, and yeast. Most recipes are also free of egg, dairy, and tree nuts (if used, reliable substitutions will be provided for these when possible). Check out my recipe index for a full list of recipes by category. 

Entries in Recipes: Soups & Stews (28)


Thai Red Curry Vegetable Soup and Homemade Garlicky Red Chili Hot Sauce (gluten-free, ACD, vegan option)



Autumn is soup weather, and I wanted soup when I returned from the farmers market this morning. I found myself inspired by Elena's recipe for Thai Vegetable Soup, and although I started making soup with her recipe in mind, in my usual style, I quickly went off the path and made up my own recipe. The whole project sort of took on a life of its own, since I had a bunch of wonderful fresh produce and a jar of red curry paste burning a hole it my pantry.  It took hardly any time to throw together and it was absolutely delicious, a fragrant and flavorful soup that is perfect for a chilly fall day. The broth is rich and rather addictive, and makes the soup surprisingly filling. I think I am just going to start making curry coconut broth to have as a satisfying and nourishing beverage on chilly mornings.  

Although it stood up just fine on its own, my bowl of soup was especially delicious with a swirl of homemade Garlicky Red Chili Hot Sauce. The original recipe is from the New York Times, and I found it by way of Seven Spoons. After reading Tara's amazing description, I knew I had to make it. So I made a big double batch of it last weekend, tweaking a couple things from the original recipe. I roasted the red peppers first to bring out the sweetness, and subbed apple cider vinegar for the white vinegar.  It smelled amazing while I made it, then I put in the fridge and let it cure, tasting periodically over the last week. The flavor has developed nicely - it packs a lot of heat, but not the kind that kills your tastebuds. It starts sweet and finishes with a bite in the back of your throat. You feel a little dampness on your forehead. Your lips tingle. You smile. Beyond being delicious, it is also gorgeous - that color is amazing, isn't it?!

IMG_4770habañeros  IMG_4754

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Chilled Summer Pea and Herb Soup (gluten free, vegan, raw, ACD)


What a surprise, another green pureed meal in a bowl.  You know me, I love green food and I love pureed food, and these loves often intersect.  This green puree, however, is very different from this one or this one or this one or this one or this one (that's only a partial round-up of all the green pureed stuff on my blog, believe it or not). All green purees, though similar in appearance, are not alike. 

Summer food has a life of its own. It vibrates. It sings. It dances. It makes my body and soul happy.   The colors, the flavors, the textures - everything is amped up a notch.  This soup is inspired by the flavors of summer; it is bold and bright and lovely. And the best part? No heat involved. It is a raw soup, the perfect solution for hot summer days when you don't want to cook!

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May SOS Kitchen Challenge Reveal: Spinach! And a recipe for Creamy Spinach & Celeriac Soup.

Now that May has arrived, it's time for the second SOS Kitchen Challenge from Ricki at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs and me!  Thanks, again, to everyone who participated last time.  You helped to make the inaugural event a huge success!

This month, Ricki and I decided to go with another versatile vegetable that can be used in a host of different ways.  Are you ready to exercise your kitchen creativity and cook up some Sweet or Savory dishes that contain. . .


Young spinach growing in my very own garden!

Popeye's favorite green leafy vegetable is our star for the month. Not only is spinach nutritious, it is also a lovely shade of green! Why do I like that?  It ties in nicely with my focus this month on Lyme disease (it's Lyme Awareness month) and my snazzy "lyme" green logo.  I also like spinach because spinach is not an artichoke.  After last week's Blogger Secret Ingredient event and four posts featuring artichokes, I'm a bit burned out on the subject!

Ricki, my SOS challenge collaborator, is hosting this month's challenge.  So, bop on over to her site to read up on all the great nutrition spinach has to offer and her great spinach recipe suggestions for inspiration!  Her kick off recipe looks absolutely delish. Last month's inaugural challenge with beets had a whopping 24 entries, and we'd love to see just as many, if not more, this time with spinach!   There are lots of great obvious savory choices, but how will you make spinach sweet?  Come on. You have until May 20 to bring it.  

To enter the challenge, simply create and post a recipe using spinach before the deadline of midnight CST, May  20, 2010 and send it to me at soskitchenchallengeATgmailDOTcom.  (For full details on what kinds of ingredients to use and how to enter the challenge, see this page).  I'll post the roundup (as will Ricki, on her blog) a week after that so you can take your time browsing through the amazing collection of recipes before the next challenge! 

As for me? Well darlings, I'm starting savory. 

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Homemade Vegan Vegetable Bouillon and Irish Beef & Cabbage Soup (gluten free, ACD)

I generally make my own vegetable broth from vegetable scraps and trimmings, but recently purchased a quart of store-bought broth in a pinch. Blech! I forgot how weird-tasting store bought vegetable broth is by comparison, especially for the price of an organic broth without creepy stuff in it. I swore I'd never do it again, even in a pinch, and vowed to only make my own vegetable broth from now on.  So, I started collecting all my little vegetable scraps again for my next pot of broth.

The next day I was catching up some reading over at 101 Cookbooks, one of my favorite blogs.  Heidi is so inspiring; her images are beautiful, her cooking seems absolutely effortless and elegant, and I relate strongly to her philosophy on food.  I deeply admire her cookbook Super Natural Cooking, and am excited about her forthcoming cookbook that she is currently working on.   She just seems so cool. I always find her posts inspiring, and somehow, she has this way of posting things that totally click into something I am thinking about, it is like magic.  However, my visit to her site the other day was particularly timely.  Why, you ask?  Because I came across her post for homemade vegetable boullion!  

I flipped out! Why hadn't I ever thought of this?!  It seemed so simple.  Bouillon is just ground of vegetables and spices, so why can't we make our own, right?  Geez.  

I knew I had to try it immediately.

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Turnip and Kale Soup (gluten free, vegan, ACD)

I love soup!  I make up soups all the time, and will eat them for every meal of the day. Truth be told, I think I think I eat soup almost everyday.   I just can't get enough soup.  I'm surprised that I do not have more recipes for soup on this blog. 

This is the most recent soup to emerge from my trusty cast iron kettle, a garlicky turnip and kale soup with a hint of chive.  I didn't have any fresh chives around, only dry I saved from my garden this summer; it would be marvelous with fresh chive, but the dry ones worked well enough!  It is kind of like potato soup, but less starchy and without all those tricky potato-induced knee pains and bouts of lethargy (darn nightshades...).   Turnips are a great source of fiber, and are ultra strengthening to the spleen.  We all know the wonderful powers of kale, and garlic is a powerful detoxifying food.  It is ACD-friendly, gluten free, and vegan. Wonderful!

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