29 August 2011

Vegetable Soup

Just before Spring arrives, officially on Thursday, a little more soup.  Though from the weather this weekend spring may have arrived a few days early.  I had friends round for lunch and we had a pre lunch drinks on the deck...outside...basking in some beautiful sunshine.   Here's hoping it continues.  Snuggling has moved out doors for a little sun lounging...

But until then some soup and this is pretty good soup.  The inspiration comes from our most recent Supper Club via Graham Kerr.  A blast from the past and aka the Galloping Gourmet and one of the first TV celebrity chefs kicking things off in the 1960s!

I was knocked over with a cold earlier in the week and this soup along with lots of tea, orange juice and a few hot toddy's, on my Mum's recommendation, did the trick in kicking it in to touch.  The kumara (sweet potato ) and parsnip add a lovely sweetness and the addition of a little cream or creme fraiche adds a little richness.  For some reason the original recipe calls for the vegetables and there peelings to be chilled in the fridge over night...I didn't and you still get a delicious bowl of soup. Would love to know if anyone out there knows what chilling all the veg and their peelings does.

Vegetable Soup, inspired by Jessica and Graham Kerr


Serves 4

3 tbsp butter
1 onion, diced
2 sticks celery, diced
2-3 carrots, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, finely diced
1 medium kumara (sweet potato), peeled and diced
2 medium, or 1 large parsnip, peeled and diced
500ml chicken or vegetable stock
2 bay leaves*
4 parsley stalks*
4 thyme sprigs*
Salt and pepper
Optional - 1 dollop of cream or creme fraiche, you can add up to 100ml...but a good dollop will deliver the richness with a little less calories.  Just be as decadent, or not,  as you wish.

*Leaving the herbs on stalks allows then to be easily removed once they have done there thing.


Melt the butter in a heavy based saucepan and add the onion, celery and carrot.  Season with a little pinch of salt and saute for a few moments.  Add the garlic and saute until everything is soft and translucent.  

Add the rest of the vegetables and fry for a few more minutes.  Next add the stock and the herbs along with a good seasoning of salt and pepper.  Bring to the boil and let it all simmer for 20 minutes.  Remove the herbs, add the cream or creme fraiche and blend to a smooth puree with a stick blender.  For extra smooth soup you can also push it through a sieve.

You can serve topped with a  swirl of creme fraiche or just a little parsley and maybe a wee pinch of chilli flakes.  What I love about this soup is the sweetness from the kumara and the parsnip.  The parsnips really deliver, being sweet in their own unique way, with more depth of flavour than their cousin the carrot. For me the chilli is the perfect addition adding a little heat to the sweet.

If you like this you might like this; Celeriac, Jerusalem Artichoke and Orange Soup
One year ago - Sunday Kitchen



  1. Well, today was soup weather for sure! Did you try to put the celery leaves in too? I have discovered that many people here throw them away and I was horrified!!! They are perfect for soup, especially if you blend the lot :-).


  2. Happy to hear you are having warm sunshine and that you are feeling better! Hmmm, never heard of chilling veggies before cooking them either. Your soup looks terrific! I love sweet potatoes and parnips.

  3. Mairi, I used to watch him on TV back in the days. I have to Google him now just in case I can catch his old shows in one of the channels.

    A couple more weeks and it's soup kind of season again here in the States. I harvested a squash already.

  4. @Alessandra Hi Alessandra, love to use the leaves too :) Waste not want not :)

  5. @Hannah Thanks Hannah & feeling much better :) No news yet on why one would chill the veg and their peelings!

  6. @Annapet Thanks Annapet, so looking forward to Spring & salads & BBQs!


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