Soups: Chowders, Chillies and Stews

Fall is upon us, as the days grow shorter and the air becomes more crisp……

And there is nothing more satisfying like a bowl of soup filled with seasonal vegetables.  As a comfort food, most soup dishes are both quick and easy to make and they can be made ahead of time and saved for later.  And in our busy daily lives, that means that you can heat up a bowl of soup whenever you feel  a chill in the air or have the need to feed a hungry crowd in a hurry!

Here is one of my favorite soups……

Curried Carrot Soup with Tarragon Oil
Curried Carrot Soup with Tarragon Oil

Curried Carrot Soup with Tarragon Oil
(ADAPTED FROM  Chef Naomi Pomeroy,  Food&Wine)

SERVINGS: 6 to 8

3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large white onion, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon minced peeled ginger
2 teaspoons Madras curry powder
1 1/2 pounds carrots, thinly sliced
7 cups water
1 teaspoon sugar
Freshly ground pepper
2 medium bunches of tarragon
1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
chopped Parsley and Snipped chives, for garnish

In a large pot, heat 1/4 cup of the oil. Add the onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring frequently, until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and curry powder and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the carrots and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes longer. Add the water and sugar and season with salt and pepper. Simmer over moderately low heat until the carrots are very tender, about 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan of boiling salted water, blanch the tarragon and parsley just until wilted, about 30 seconds. Drain the herbs and transfer to a bowl of ice water, then drain again, squeezing out the excess water. Transfer to a blender. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of olive oil and puree until smooth. Strain the oil through a double layer of cheesecloth without pressing down on the solids.

Carefully puree the hot soup in a blender or food processor until smooth. Return the soup to the pot, stir in the lemon zest and season with salt and pepper, as needed. Ladle the soup into shallow bowls, drizzle with the tarragon oil and garnish with parsley and  chives.

Make Ahead:
The soup and tarragon oil can be refrigerated separately overnight. Reheat the soup and let the tarragon oil come to room temperature before serving.

Yields 6 to 8 Servings.


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