Broccoli and Hemp seed Soup

A couple of months back I went to a vegan fair at Enoggera for World Vegan day and got a couple of free sample packets of Organic Hulled Hemp Seeds. I have never tried hemp before, but I was very curious to see what it is like. I have read that is very healthy.

Hemp seeds contain 33% protein,  all the 10 Essential Amino Acids, Omega 3, 6, 9, and GLA  (Gamma-linolenic acid). It is easier to digest then soy & whey and is a good source of Chlorophyll, which helps keep breath free and cleans the blood. They are also vegan, gluten free and raw. They sounds fanatic!

I have only really heard using hemp seeds on American health sites and books. I have also never seen it for sale here. I just found out this is because Hemp products are illegal in Australia and New Zealand for human consumption. I didn’t realize till just now that the flyer on the sample said  ‘Best Food Grade, Not for Human Consumption in AU/NZ only’ . Opps!

Australia and New Zealand are the only countries in the world that eating Hemp is illegal. There was a application passed by the Food Standards Australian and New Zealand (FSANZ) in 2002, which would make hemp foods available here. However, our ignorant former Prime Minister John Howard, had the ministerial council reject the application, as he thought he might send the wrong message about Hemp. That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. I won’t rant about all the reasons I can’t stand this man, but if Australian health isn’t bad enough, he had to stop something positive, based on his old stuffy conservative believes. Other misinformed or ignorant ministers have had similar beliefs. But Government Representative Cynthia Thielen does not. She stated that “Industrial hemp is not a drug and don’t try to porn it off as a drug and try to claim that we’re misleading the youth. The youth know better. It is you guys that don’t“.

Currently hemp seeds, hemp oil and hemp protein are legal for selling here for other uses, other then human consumption, such as rubbing on your skin, feeding your soil or your pets. The last update on this issue is that FSANZ has again approved a draft to allow hemp to be consumed as a food on the 31st October 2012. However,  we won’t find out until 60 days after that date whether it has been rejected, accepted or amended. So hopefully by new years we will know. If you are in Australian want to sign the petition, click the link below.

Hemp has a long tradition in human history. It has been used for over 10,000 years. It has been eaten in China for 8000 years and also has a long tradition as a food in both India and DSC01324Europe. There is evidence that hemp was also used by the ancient Mesopotamian,  since before 8000 BC. Hemp was also used from the 5th century up until the 1800’s to make ropes and sails for ships. In fact hemp came with the First Fleet to Australia for this purpose. So hopefully we will stop living in the dark ages soon and join the rest of the world.

Anyway enough ranting. I decided to use it to make a soup. The hemp seeds by themselves have a mild taste, which is slightly nutty and it is very soft to chew. Cooked, they gave the soup a nice nutty flavor and it was incredibly delicious. Unfortunately its quite expensive, so don’t think I’ll be buying it soon, unless the law brings down the price. 1 kg of Hemp Seeds is nearly $60 and as far as I know has to be ordered online. Are hemp products it expensive in your country?

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Broccoli and Hemp seed Soup (vegan, gluten free, soy free, nut free)

Ingredients:

1/2 small onion

1 garlic clove

1 small head of broccoli

1 tablespoon olive oil

1-2 teaspoons ground cumin

1.5 cups vegetable liquid stock

1/4 cup hemp seeds

Method:

1. Dice the onion and garlic. Roughly cut the broccoli, including the stem and any leaves.

2. Heat a small pot with olive oil then add the onion and garlic. Saute for 2 mins.

3. Add the cumin and broccoli and saute for another 2-3 mins.

4. Add the liquid stock and bring to the boil.

5. Add the hemp seeds and place on a simmer and cover. Cook for 15-20 mins.

6. Take off the heat, blend till smooth and then serve.

* 1 large serve or two small serves.

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To sign a Petitition Click >>> http://www.surveymonkey.com/Home_Landing.aspx?sm=oIxdS73n%2bOdG923DV5Up0PJ%2fqKvRswtIWT0OoYCA9So%3d

Cynthia Thielen, ‘Does hemp seed give a mixed message to the public?’ <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DatJgJvD6gY>

Green Pages, ‘Hemp Foods Legal in Australia’, <http://www.thegreenpages.com.au/projects/hemp-foods-legal-in-australia/>

Hemp Foods, ‘Hemp Legislation’ <http://www.hempfoods.com.au/legislation/>

Hemp Seeds Australia, <http://www.hempseedsaustralia.com.au>

Ashley Hall, ‘Hemp could get nutritional nod’, <http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-12-08/hemp-seeds-cannabis-food-standards/3719846>