Wow! With one last signing at Coles in HSC yesterday, SOUPLAH drew to a close and what an experience it’s been! They might be my recipes, but that’s where the “I” ends in the book business. Thank you to everyone who came out at all three stops: family, friends, coworkers, collaborators, and long time readers. The staff at Chapters MicMac, Chapters Bayers Lake, and Halifax Shopping Center Coles were warm, welcoming and supportive; I dare not list them for fear of leaving someone out. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Thanks to Scott Munn (photomunn.ca), without whose photographic genius the book would be pretty darn dull. And, for Claire and Linda, thank you for being the other two legs on my tripod–xo!
Without further ado, here’s the recipe for the Roasted Root Vegetable Chowder that made the rounds with us, winning over taste buds and tongues of soup fans and skeptics alike. Now, the book recipe is slightly different in that it has flour for thickening, and different herbs, but I wanted a lighter chowder more suitable for spring weather. Enjoy!
Root Vegetable Chowder
Roasting the vegetables extracts their natural sugars, which is what causes the browning (called caramelization). This in turn intensifies the flavours, erases bitterness and creating a more complex tasting soup.
4 x 8 oz servings
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 /2 cup parsnip, cubed*
1 /2 cup carrots, cubed
1 /2 cup turnips, cubed
1 /2 cup red potatoes, cubed
1 /2 cup butternut squash, cubed
(* It doesn’t matter what size you cut these vegetables into, as long as they are cut uniformly so that they cook evenly.)
For the base:
1 tablespoon butter
1 /4 cup diced yellow onions (about 1 /2 small medium onion)
1 /4 cup diced celery
1 1 /2 cup vegetable stock
3 /4 cup coffee (18%) cream
1 /4 cup heavy (35%) cream
3 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 /2 teaspoon herbes de provence
1 /2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Roasting the vegetables: Preheat oven to 400F. Spread vegetables in a single layer on sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil. Roast until vegetables begin to brown and are soft (about 45 minutes).
Preparing the base: Melt butter in a large, heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Stir in onions and celery, cooking until soft. Add stock has been added, bring to a simmer. Add the roasted vegetables to the broth, and stir in cream, herbs, salt and pepper. Bring back to simmer and heat through for 5-6 minutes, allowing the flavours to blend before serving.