Soups have been ranking higher and higher among my favorite foods this past year or so. I think it’s a sign I’m becoming a grownup, since I never used to “crave” a good soup like I do now (either that or I’m eating better soups). There’s just a great quality to them; soups are filling and hearty and creative, and usually easy (and cheap) to make. This carrot-parsnip soup is one of our latest favorites and I wanted to share it with you.
The recipe comes from a book called Soup I was given for Christmas by my sister-in-law. It’s one of those great books with huge pictures so you know what you’re getting into. This recipe is a beautiful creamy orange, one of those soups that would look like baby food if you didn’t know it tasted so good. This is one of Rachel’s favorites, and we’ve modified it a little bit to suit our own tastes.
It’s easy, delicious, and warming as a meal. The ginger is a crucial ingredient; it really adds a brightness to the dish and complements some of the earthier flavors of the root vegetables. The original recipe calls for orange zest as well (which we excluded), and that would be a great way to add even more of those bright highlights. Feel free to use cream instead of milk for a richer soup, or leave out the dairy altogether (this could very easily be a vegan meal). In terms of helping you live more simply, this is one that’s easy to make a lot of quickly (and again, cheaply) to set aside, or even as a low-maintenance last minute meal when you don’t have a lot of time to cook.
Okay, let’s get to it! As always, let me know what you think and what variations you come up with. This could be a great base for something more complicated like a chili, or it could embrace some bolder flavors like hot chiles or strong greens. Here we go:
Carrot Parsnip Soup Recipe
3-4 tbsp butter or vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 lb carrots, chopped
1 lb parsnips, chopped
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
2-3 cups vegetable stock (or chicken stock if that’s what you have)
1/2 cup milk or light cream
salt and pepper
optional: sprigs of cilantro or similar to garnish
Bring your favorite soup pot to medium heat and saute the onions in the oil, stirring occasionally. When the onion is softened, add the carrots and parsnips. Cover the pan and cook for 15 minutes or so, until the vegetables have softened somewhat.
Add the ginger and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cover again, and allow the soup to simmer heartily for 30 minutes or so. The goal is for everything to be pretty close to mush before you move on.
With an immersion blender, puree the soup until very smooth. Of course you can use a traditional blender, just remember that hot liquids can be pretty wild when blended — let it cool a little before blending, or do it in small batches.
Heat the soup through and add salt and pepper to taste. Add the milk or cream and bring to a gentle simmer, then remove from heat and serve.
There you go! It’s really delicious. Serve with a good crusty bread or some kind of crouton/cracker situation. Let me know what you think!
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See ya soon, foodies.