Recipe: Roasted Carrot Soup.

I haven’t posted a recipe in ages!  If you’re already stuffed full with holiday sweets and are actually craving something healthy for balance (!) or you have a cold storage room brimming with carrots (or both), here goes:

Roasted Carrot Soup

8 large carrots, peeled, sliced into 1″ medallions

1 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp butter

1 medium onion, diced

1 tsp fresh gingerroot, peeled and minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1/4 cup milk, optional

Salt and pepper to taste

Fresh chopped parsley for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Cover a baking sheet with a piece of baking parchment.  Combine chopped carrots and olive oil in a small bowl and mix until the carrots are covered in the oil.  Spread the carrots out on the baking sheet in a single layer.  Place in hot oven and roast for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and turn the carrots; roast another 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and use in recipe.  (You can also cool the carrots, then refrigerate them until ready to use).

To make the soup:

Melt 2 tbsp of butter in a large saucepan.  Add onion and saute gently until onion is soft.  Add roasted carrots, gingerroot, garlic, and broth.  Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove the soup from the heat and use an immersion blender to carefully puree the hot vegetables and broth.  Wear a welder’s helmet, apron, and arm guards if you’re not good with the blender, and be prepared to call a professional cleaning service that specializes in disaster restoration to deal with the carrot spray all over your kitchen tile.  (This safety recommendation comes from someone who has a tendency to make a gigantic mess in the kitchen – I remember when I was a kid and I’d “help” my Mum whip cream.  Four days after an “episode,” she’d still find whipped cream on the chandelier, in the boot closet, and on the door handle of the car parked in the driveway).

At any rate, to finish:

Place the soup back on the burner and add the milk, if using.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste.  Stir and cook just until reheated, then ladle the soup into bowls.  Garnish with chopped parsley.  Yield: 2 large servings or 4 small ones.

Note:  If you are a big fan of the flavour of ginger, feel free to add a bit more to this recipe, as it can easily handle it.

Metric Conversion Tables.

Carrots_Normandeau

Parsnip cake.

We went straight from Zucchinipalooza to Carrotextravaganza around here this fall.  While I had only a modest harvest of carrots from my community garden plot this year, the farm that provides us with our CSA share baskets had a positive bumper crop, and so for quite awhile now, we’ve been pretty much swimming in carrots.  It’s not a bad problem to have – we’ve had various carrot breads, soups (click through to see my purple carrot soup), and a cake with cream cheese filling.  My hubby, the avowed Meatatarian, will actually eat carrots, so we’ll get through the rest of them with little trouble.

The parsnips are another story.

I didn’t grow parsnips this year (nor have I ever – they’re on my list of Crops to Plant One Day in the Nebulous Future).  But our CSA baskets have been FULL of them.  According to the owner of the farm, this is only the second year they’ve grown parsnips, but their success was “amazing.”

Of course, my hubby won’t touch them with a ten foot pole.  He won’t even eat them roasted, glazed with a bit of butter and brown sugar, which is really my favourite way to prepare them.

So I took a cue from the carrot madness we have going on and baked a cake.

Parsnip Cake

3/4 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup pure maple syrup (you could use agave syrup if you don’t have maple, but maple tastes best)

3 eggs (if you wish to substitute a flax gel* in place of 1 egg, you could)

2 cups all-purpose flour (you could sub out 1/4 cup of white flour for whole wheat, if you prefer.  I’m also thinking of experimenting with almond meal)

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp cardamom

3 cups parsnips, peeled and grated

1 apple, peeled and chopped finely

Juice of 1 orange

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Grease two loaf pans and line with parchment.

Melt butter and cool slightly.  Add sugar, maple syrup, and eggs, and mix thoroughly.   Add flour, baking powder, and spices and combine.  Fold in parsnips, apple, and orange juice and stir until evenly distributed throughout the batter.  Pour into prepared loaf pans and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

(*To “make” an egg out of flax, mix 1 tbsp. ground flaxseed in 3 tbsp. water and let sit until it gels, about 5 minutes).

Handy Conversion Calculator

IMG_8186

And that is how you get someone to eat their parsnips.  😉

Do you grow parsnips in your garden?  More importantly, do you EAT parsnips?  What are your favourite parsnip recipes?

Related posts – Parsnip Cake (From Sewing Room to Potting Shed)

Carrot greens – yay or nay?

Carrots FP

Allright…here’s a little informal poll for your Monday! 🙂

While doing some research about toxic plants for an article I’m working on, I came across an interesting debate:  Are carrot greens really toxic, or can you chow down on them without any fear of getting sick?

I’ve read about the supposedly stomachache-inducing alkaloids they contain and their propensity to deliver contact and photodermatitis to allergic individuals due to the presence of furocoumarins…BUT there are also pages and pages of recipes and testimonials touting the nutritional value of carrot greens.

It seems, as usual, that it all might come down to how much you eat.

For my part, I’ve always discarded the tops – they’re just a tad too bitter-tasting to add to my salad bowl.  But maybe I should throw them in a stir fry instead?

Do you eat carrot greens? How do you use them in recipes?