One of the few things we are still harvesting down on our allotment is parsnips (well, okay, the only thing at the moment). They are nice and sweet… no surprise, since parsnips get sweeter after a frost and we’ve had plenty of those. Ours are rather mutant-sized compared to the ones at the supermarket, but even those that are 7.5cm (3 inches) at the crown don’t have woody cores.
Day before yesterday I made a mildly spicy parsnip soup that was the best parsnip soup I’ve had. It’s from one of my xmas pressie books, 400 Best-Ever Soups by Anne Sheasby. If all the soups in the book are as yummy as this one, I shall be a happy bunny.
The cream is optional… the soup was delicious without it.
The toasted garlic & mustard seed topping is really nice, but be aware that browned garlic does have a rather distinct, slightly bitter taste. We both loved it, but Mr Thrifty opined that the topping might not be everyone’s cup of tea. If you want a more subtle flavour, I think garlic croutons would be a good choice.
You will notice that although I don’t like pureed bean soups, I love pureed vegetable soups. Go figure.
|1 tablespoon||vegan margarine||1 tablespoon|
|40g||onion, finely chopped||about 1/3 medium|
|1/2 teaspoon||ground coriander||1/2 teaspoon|
|1/4 teaspoon||ground cumin||1/4 teaspoon|
|1/4 teaspoon||turmeric||1/4 teaspoon|
|1/8 teaspoon||chilli powder||1/8 teaspoon|
|400ml||vegetable stock||1-2/3 cup|
|3 tablespoons||vegan cream (optional)||3 tablespoons|
|to taste||salt and freshly ground pepper||to taste|
|For the topping|
|1 teaspoon||mild vegetable oil||1 teaspoon|
|1||garlic clove, slivered||1|
|1 teaspoon||mustard seeds||1 teaspoon|
1. Peel parsnips and cut into small dice.
2. Heat a saucepan on low heat and melt margarine. Gently fry the onion and parsnip for about 3 minutes.
3. Add the coriander, cumin, turmeric and chilli powder and cook for another minute.
4. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Then cover and simmer gently for 40 minutes, or until parsnips are tender.
5. Cool slightly, then puree in a blender. Be very careful with hot liquids in the blender… fill no more than 1/3 full and hold the lid on firmly using a folded kitchen towel before switching on. The steam will try to push the lid off the blender. Hot soup being flung around the kitchen is not a good thing!
6. Return soup to the pan and stir in cream if using. Add a little water if it’s too thick. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Heat gently until just simmering.
7. Whilst soup is reheating, make topping. Heat vegetable oil over medium-low heat and saute garlic and mustard seeds until garlic is lightly browned and mustard seeds start to pop.
8. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with garlic/mustard topping.
Makes 2 servings.