Friday, February 27, 2009
Root Vegetable Soup
This soup is filled with lesser known, or at least lesser appreciated vegetables. We throw in a few superstars just to ease you in gently, but there are some new favorites just waiting to be discovered. It's a bit like the cast of a Godfather movie - a few of the old classics, but also some new young talent that will go on to do great things. (I'll let you decide which Godfather actors you think I'm referring to. Knock yourself out.)
This soup also happens to be very inexpensive to make. And if I may put on my environmentally conscious cap for a moment, I implore you to NOT put each of these individual produce items in a plastic bag at the supermarket. You're going to peel them anyway, and you're only buying one of each thing. Just put them in your basket and then on the conveyor belt. The earth will thank you.
But you didn't come here for politics or morals, did you? You came here for soup. So here it is, in all its glory - a subtly spiced, earthy bowl of heaping goodness.
Root Vegetable Soup
adapted from Mollie Katzen's "Vegetable Heaven"
2 teaspoons EVOO
1/2 large onion, chopped
2 small or 1 large garlic clove, minced or pressed
2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt (more to taste, if you like)
1 small rutabaga, peeled and diced
1 small turnip, peeled and diced
1 small sweet potato or yam, peeled and diced
1 medium-small potato, peeled and diced
1 small parsnip, peeled and diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
3 cups water
pinch of cinnamon
1. Heat the EVOO in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over low heat. Add onion, garlic, ginger, and salt, and sautee for about 10 minutes, until very soft. Stir in the rest of the vegetables. Cover and cook over medium heat for 10 more minutes.
2. Add the water and cinnamon, stir well. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat way down to low. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, or until vegetables are completely tender.
3. Now you have a couple of options here: puree the soup with a stick blender (or other implement), leaving some texture. OR puree only a quarter of the soup in a blender or food processor, keeping most of the vegetables in chunks. It's totally up to you. I chose the former method.
Serve with some hot crusty bread and enjoy! I guarantee you will discover some new friends in the root vegetable kingdom.