Monday, November 11, 2013

Quick Curried Carrot Soup (Vegan)

I've been in a soup-making mode...

I love it for lunch. I love it for dinner. Leftover the next day?

Even better as the flavors soak together. I've been into vegan purees lately using my immersion blender. I swear there's nothing easier to have in your cooking repertoire than vegan purees. They're so tasty—so seemingly fancy—yet so simple that they impress at dinner parties.

Feeling a little under the weather?

Soups are healing for the throat and the winter-weary soul.

Another great tip?

Serve them with a quick cast iron skillet cornbread. I make mine gluten-free and with fresh blackberries (frozen would work great too). Soup and cornbread are a hearty, healthy complete meal.

I almost always have bags of baby carrots in my fridge. They're a great snack, especially with hummus. But they're also great roasted (check out my recipe for Honey Rosemary Baby Carrots) or pureed into a quick soup. Of course, you can use normal-sized carrots too. It's just a bit more prep work peeling and chopping them. The only other big ingredient is a bit of curry powder. The spicy, gingery flavor gives this soup and little bit of added flare. It also comes out of the pantry.

I make this soup all the time. It's basically one of my pantry staples. So I thought I'd finally photograph and write it up for you lovely readers.

You can also swap out carrots for butternut squash in this recipe for a different sort of soup. A great tip—Trader Joe's sells peeled and cubed butternut squash that takes the work out of the prep.

Serve with Gluten Free Blackberry Cornbread

Quick Curried Carrot Soup (Vegan)
Serves 4 to 6 people
Cooking time: about 25 minutes
Vegan; gluten-free

1 pound baby carrots
4 cups low sodium vegetable stock
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon curry powder (or more to taste)
1 bunch fresh thyme tied together with kitchen twine or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)
salt and freshly ground pepper
good olive oil for drizzling

1. Place the carrots, garlic cloves, stock, and thyme into a heavy-bottomed pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the carrots are tender.

2. Remove from heat and fish out the bunch of thyme if using fresh thyme. Stir in the curry powder and maple syrup. Puree the soup until smooth using an immersion blender, or transfer to a regular blender and puree in batches. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Note: more stock or water may be added to achieve desired consistency.

3. To serve ladle the soup into bowels and drizzle with good olive oil. If desired garnish with fresh thyme sprigs. Enjoy!