Monday, December 7, 2009

Carrot Ginger Soup

The first time I made carrot ginger soup was a few years back and I had a dreadful head cold, and for whatever reason, C-G soup sounded fantastic. I'd never had it before, but something about a creamy soup with a lot of ginger just seemed the right thing, and it totally was, and was absolutely delicious. Then I moved in with The Boy who was decidedly anti-ginger and I didn't make it again, but the thought was creeping more and more into my head as the weather got cooler here. Last month I was invited to a potluck and I thought that would be the perfect chance to make it again, without subjecting The Boy to the soup. Well turns out he loved it. He tasted it when I was done making it and wanted more. I had some leftover after the potluck and he ate it all. The carrot ginger floodgates are now open and I can make it as often as I please!!

Most recently, I made it for my mom and sister when they came up to visit. This is a soup I didn't have a recipe for that I liked, so I just sort of winged it, and wrote it down as best I could as I went along. Everyone who's eaten it so far has loved it. It's great plain or with a little bit of chopped fresh dill sprinkled on the top. I recommend using organic carrots for this recipe because carrots are really excellent at soaking up toxins in soil. It's one of the few veggies I spend the extra money on and buy organic, though they really still aren't a horrible financial burden. Another new thing for me -- freshly grated nutmeg. For years I went "yea yea sure fine" and used the preground. Recently I bought a few whole nutmegs to try, figuring I had the microplane now, might as well since I like seeing what that'll grate up and WOW what a difference! It's almost like a different spice. Definitely give it a go if you can.

Carrot Ginger Soup
2 ribs of celery, roughly chopped
2 small shallots, roughly chopped
2 tbsp vegan margarine
2 lbs carrots, peeled and cut into coins (or! Shortcut! 2 lbs of baby cut carrots)
5 cups vegetable broth (or, 4 cups + 1 cup of water if you buy it by the quart)
3 inch piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1/4 tsp fresh ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 cup mimicreme (vegan nut-based heavy cream - though an unsweetened plain soy, rice, almond, whatevermilk would also work fine)

1. Melt the margarine in a large soup pot and sautee the shallots and celery until it begins to get tender.

2. Add the carrots, broth, ginger, and spices and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 30 minutes or until the carrots are super soft (this will depend on how small you cut them).

3. Take the soup off the heat and either puree it in the pot with an immersion blender (easier choice) or puree it in batches in a blender (making sure to allow for steam to escape or your blender top with blow off) until it's perfectly smooth.

4. Return the soup to the pot if you took it out, and add the maple syrup and milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with fresh dill, if desired.

Shown with a sprinkling of Dill