With autumn come winter squash recipes, which is wonderful, but for the days you are not up to conquering a butternut or acorn squash, there are carrots.
Set aside the cleaver, you can make this inspiring orange soup in a jiffy with basic ingredients.
Creamy Carrot Soup tastes smooth, mellow, and comforting. Do start with homemade broth if you can. The flavor of this soup depends on real butter and real broth.
4 medium carrots
1/2 small onion
Pinch of thyme leaves, fresh or dried
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups homemade chicken or vegetable broth
small piece fresh ginger or 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup buttermilk or coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper
Fresh herb of choice, for topping
Any carrots will do: from the garden or the grocery store. Grocery store carrots have been held in cold storage, converting some of their starch to sugar which gives them a sweeter taste. They will shine in this recipe, I promise.
If you are craving a little more zip, try the Thai-Inspired version with fresh lime juice and coconut milk. Two small orange sweet potatoes can be used in place of carrots if you like.
1. Thinly slice carrots to equal 2 cups using either a chef’s knife or food processor with a slicing disc. Chop enough onion to equal ¼ cup. Finely mince ginger: you will need ½ teaspoon (or more if you like more ginger flavor).
2. In 2-quart saucepan, sauté carrot, onion, and thyme in butter until crisp tender. Add broth and ginger. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 10-15 minutes or until carrots are very tender. Cool slightly.
3. Puree mixture in blender for a very creamy soup or with an immersion blender right in the pan. Return soup to pan, stir in buttermilk and heat through. Do not allow soup to boil. Add salt and pepper to taste before serving. Ladle into bowls and top with chopped fresh herb of choice, if desired.
Thai-inspired Carrot Soup: add juice of 1 lime, a pinch of cayenne pepper, and ¼ cup creamy peanut butter before pureeing. Use coconut milk in place of buttermilk. Top servings with chopped fresh cilantro.
Creamy Sweet Potato Soup: substitute 2 small orange sweet potatoes for the carrots.
St. Hildegard’s Carrot Soup: St. Hildegard of Bingen, a Benedictine nun from medieval Germany (1098-1179) is responsible for linking the spices we know today as “pumpkin spice”: ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, and clove. She called them “spices of joy.”
To make a soup St. Hildegard would approve of, omit the thyme leaves and add ½ teaspoon pumpkin spice. You can leave the fresh ginger in or omit it and rely on the ginger in the spice mixture.
Serve with a dish of warm black beans drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and a few grinds of black pepper or some fresh-baked biscuits or muffins. Cream Biscuits or Fluffy Buttermilk Drop Biscuits are both easy and good!
Keywords: carrot soup
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