20 March 2012

Spring Day Poking Around ... and Carrot Soup

SB and I have had our noses poked in the seed catalogues and gardening books this past week and we've been thinking about vegetable gardens and berries and Springtime yard pursuits! Isn't the change of seasons a motivating time? Yesterday, it was absolutely glorious outside all day. SB raked and I baked. I poked around a bit looking for daffodils and crocus popping through the soil. Then we sat around on the back terrace and caught the first mosquito of the season and laughed over that little bugger. It was a lazy day at the grey cottage.




Come evening, I used some leftover carrots (from the little church's Corned Beef and Cabbage Dinner event) and made SB and I a delightful pot of Cream of Carrot Soup. This was a simple uncomplicated affair - onions and garlic sautéed, boiled potatoes, and cooked carrots, a flour and butter roux, and a session in the blender to make a smooth as silk purée. The lot was put back in the pan with some low-fat evaporated milk, chicken broth, white pepper and a bit of smoked paprika. Whisked to a steaming simmer, it was a perfect easy supper. We had some leftover yeast rolls all warm and steamy to dip in the soup ... and I had my cold glass of Sauvignon blanc. Life is good.



I hope your week started out just as fun and restful as ours! If it didn't, there's always tomorrow! Happy Spring!





Cream of Carrot Soup
adapted from Lisa Kivirist's recipe in Farmstead Chef

Ingredients:

1 lb. carrots, peeled sliced and steamed
3 medium potatoes, peeled, chopped, and boiled
1 large onion, peeled and chopped small dice
3 cloves garlic, minced
¼ c. butter
⅓ c. flour
3 c. chicken broth
1 ¾ c. low fat evaporated milk
¼ c. milk
1 tsp. sugar
¼ tsp white pepper
⅛ tsp. smoked paprika
salt, to taste

sweet paprika and chopped chives for garnish

Making the Soup:

1. Prepare the potatoes and carrots and pop them into a blender. Drizzle in some of the chicken broth and purée until the vegetables are very smooth.

2. Scald the evaporated milk and milk in a deep saucepan (the one you cooked the potatoes in). Add the puréed vegetables.

3. Sauté the onions in the butter until they soften and glisten. Add the garlic and sauté another few minutes. Add the flour to make a roux of the buttery juices and vegetables. Pour some of the chicken broth in to form a sauce. Turn this into the blender and purée this. Add the rest of the chicken broth to bring the purée away from the sides and bottom of the blender.

4. When the sauce is very smooth, add it to the contents of the soup pot. Whisk everything together to make a soft and silky soup.

5. Add the sugar, white pepper and smoked paprika and bring the pot to a very gentle simmer. Don't boil the soup ... keep a sharp eye on it. Add salt to taste and serve when steaming hot.

6. Garnish bowls of soup with a sprinkling of sweet paprika and chopped chives. Warm rolls for dipping are delicious, also.





6 comments:

  1. glorious first day of spring here in Lincolnshire... sun is bursting and its actually warm, if not hot... which is freaky for the 20th March!... did loads of planting too... did I ever show you a pic of all our wonderful daffodils? When we moved into the cottage the first spring hundreds (not kidding) of daffs came up on the bank infront of the cottage, planted by a previous occupant... we're very lucky!... lol x

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    1. It might be time to post a nice big picture of those daffodils, Dom! There is nothing like a beautiful Springtime garden shot! Know what you mean about odd warm weather ... the windows and doors are all open here ... it's up around 75 degrees F and the sun is blazing! Our TV forecasters spent a few minutes last evening warning people not to get ahead of themselves with gardens and plantings as we are sure to have a relapse to lower temps and raw rainy weatherv... if not some late season snow!

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  2. Happy Spring to you too. It's been quite warm here today, but I don't want to speak too soon. It's bound to snow again I am sure fairly soon :)
    The soup looks gorgeous and I have no doubt it tastes delicious. Perfect for dipping with warm, buttery rolls.

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  3. What a pretty photo of your gorgeous carrot soup. Its amazing what you can do with a few vegetables and some milk and stock.

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  4. Yes there is always tomorrow! Bring on Spring!!!!

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  5. Sounds like the perfect day to welcome Spring. Love this kind of soup; getting anxious to get back home to my kitchen and make some soup.
    Rita

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