I discovered when I brought groceries home the other night from a local farmers market that I already had carrots…so I did go on the hunt for something ‘carroty’ in order to use one of those bunches immediately.
I’m seldom in the mood for soup in warmer weather unless it’s a cold gazpacho but we’ve had a long, cool spring in Colorado and yesterday was a beautiful day. Just pleasant enough but not yet hot so when I saw this recipe I anticipated it would be perfect for lunch.
I’ve read the reviews at www.epicurious.com and it’s sort of funny when someone says they decided to not use the garnish and then complain it was a bit bland. So true – if you don’t plan to make the butter/chile/onion butter to top it with…or the roasted peanuts; well, why would you do that? The garnishes are very much part of what makes it special! I under-salted my soup a bit too since I didn’t have unsalted peanuts; easier to add than take away I say.
This recipe was perfect and luckily I had the other ingredients, although admit substituting dry ginger for fresh ginger. I found a website that said 1/8 tsp dry was a good substitute for a Tbsp of fresh ginger, but I doubled that so I would say start small and season to your taste if you also need to use dry ginger.
Did you know that carrots once grew in shades of purple, red, yellow, white and green? I didn’t! Story is that orange carrots were first developed in Holland in the 1600’s and that multi-colored varieties are making a comeback. Also, that if stored next to apples, pears or peaches that they can become bitter? I’m pretty jucicious about what goes into either my fruit or veggie drawer…still, good to know.
Carrot Ginger Soup with Chile Butter
For the Chile Butter
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 Tbsp finely chopped green onions
- 1/4 tsp dried crushed red pepper
For the Soup
- 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
- 1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
- 1 1/4 cups chopped onion
- 1 5-ounce white-skinned potato, peeled, chopped
- 2 1/2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
- 5 cups (or more) vegetable broth or chicken broth
- 6 Tbsp unsalted roasted peanuts, finely chopped (I had some regular peanuts in the can and they were salted. I put those in my small countertop oven for about 20 minutes at 300 degrees to 'roast' them.
To Make the Chile Butter:
- Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Cover and chill. Bring to room temp before using.
To Make the Soup:
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter in large pot over medium-high heat. Add carrots, onion, potato, and ginger; sprinkle with salt and sauté until vegetables are slightly softened but not brown, stirring often, about 10 minutes.
- Add 5 cups broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are soft, about 20 minutes.
- Cool slightly, then puree in batches in blender until smooth. Return soup to same pot; if desired, add more broth by 1/4 cupfuls to thin soup.
- Bring to simmer. Season with salt and black pepper.
- Ladle soup into bowls. Top with small spoonful of chile butter; sprinkle with nuts
From Bon Appetit magazine, May 2010