Soup season is here.
I recently stumbled upon a bargain. Not a new pair of shoes or a coat. I mean an real bargain, an edible one. No, not chocolate! Parsnips! Thanks to Tesco I found 4kg of perfectly ok parsnips for ….. £1.09! Lucky me! Although I had forgotten that I had parked the car a distance away and walked, knowing I only wanted a few bits. Hey hoy, that added to the cardio exercise with some more weight!
I love parsnips, often preferring them to potatoes. They are a powerhouse of antioxidants and nutrients, helping reduce cholesterol and the risk of diabetes. More information here.
I knew that I wouldn’t have enough freezer space to make soup with the whole lot, so I used half, keeping the larger ones for roasting during the week ahead.
For those of you who juice, try pear, parsnip, ginger and mint. It’s amazing! I had plenty of options for these beauties, but soup was the main order of the day.
Soup making is not an exact science. It’s a tasting experience. Use spices. season with salt and pepper and I find the juice of half a lemon at the end really makes a difference to many soups.
This is my spicy roasted parsnip soup.
Note, quantities can vary. I also like to roast my veg on a tray for a lovely flavour, then add to the stock in a blender. It saves a saucepan and you can keep it quite concentrated, which helps with freezer space.
2kg (roughly) parsnips. Peel them and chop into equal size pieces for even roasting. If you have really large woody ones, take out the core.
2 large onions peeled and roughly chopped.
2 or 3 large garlic cloves – left in their skin
A large apple, cored and sliced into eight.
Ground cumin – 2 tsp ish
An inch of fresh ginger – I add turmeric as I have it, but it’s not essential, and you can used ground ginger if you don’t have fresh.
Stock – about 750ml – or if you need more add water. The amount depends on how concentrated you want the soup for storing. Chicken stock is great but if you are vegetarian use a good veggie stock.
Juice of half a lemon, slat and pepper
Lay all veg and the apple on a baking tray.
Drizzle with some light olive oil pop the garlic cloves where you can find them – you’ll need to pop out the flesh when cooked.
Roast on about 200 degrees for about 20 minutes – Mine was on a tray in the roasting oven of the Aga, on the middle shelf.
NOTE I use a lots of ‘abouts’ in soup recipes. You need to find your own way. It’s not a cake!
When softened, sprinkle over the spices, toss about a bit and return to the oven for five minutes…. or a bit more, but don’t burn it. If you use fresh ginger and turmeric, give it all a good stir.
Remove. Cool. Pop out the garlic. Put everything with the stock in a blender. You may need to do a couple of batches.
Whizz until really smooth, then taste. Add the lemon. Taste. Add salt and pepper.
If it’s too spicy, you can add some more stock. No two soups are ever the same!
I roast all my veg for soups. Carrot and coriander is lovely. Butternut squash and red pepper is divine with some sage leaves and fresh chilli. I love soup making, it’s culinary magic!