Saturday, February 23, 2013

ChezCindy: Carrot Parsnip Soup

Carrots can generally be found in vegetable bins in most homes.  Underappreciated and not really thought of as the star ingredient.  Perhaps maybe with carrot cake.  No argument there.   Always yummy and delicious. But I was looking for more ways to enjoy carrots for lunch and dinner.

Carrots are inexpensive, super healthy, and delicious.  I prefer them cooked as opposed to eating them raw.  Cooking highlights the flavor of carrots, and they need little adornment.  I enjoy them roasted with just a little olive oil, salt and pepper.  Always easy and quick as a side dish for dinner. 

This carrot soup recipe turned out to be a perfect winter soup.  Its bright orange color is sunny even on the grayest winter day. Great texture, creamy without using any cream; with a subtle sweetness brought out by addition of parsnips.    

Carrot Parsnip Soup
2 tablespoons oil, divided
1 cup chopped onion
1 pound carrots
3/4 pound parsnips
1 cup water
3 cups unsalted vegetable stock, divided
2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon white pepper

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large heavy bottom soup pan.  Add the chopped onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring over medium heat until soft.  

Peel the carrots and parsnips.  Cut into 1/2-inch pieces adding to the pan with the onions.  Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of salt, stirring to combine.  Cook for about 10 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften.  Add in 1 cup of water, continuing to cook for 15 minutes.  Once the vegetables are mostly tender, add 2 cups stock, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30-35 minutes until the vegetables are tender.  Remove from heat, cooling for 10 minutes.

Transfer the cooled carrot mixture to a blender or food processor, (or use an immersion blender) puree until smooth.  Return the pureed soup to the pan.  Taste for seasoning, adding the white pepper and more salt if necessary.  Add the remaining stock 1/2 cup at a time, stirring to thin the soup until you reach the preferred consistency.  Serve hot. 

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