Showing posts with label vegetable soup. Show all posts
Showing posts with label vegetable soup. Show all posts

Friday, July 1, 2016

Roast Carrot Soup

I know, I keep giving you carrot soup recipes, but this one was just so gorgeous I had to share it. I found it at the Kalbos Café at the West Cork Arts Centre in Skibbereen (West Cork, Ireland), when I stopped in for a quick light lunch (I’ve eaten there before). The Arts Centre itself took years to build, and opened in 2015. It’s been a very busy place ever since, and it plays an important role in the local cultural community. Brilliant move to have an place to eat right alongside it. (I tried to find a picture that showed both, but the cafe is kind of tucked in and it's hard to get both in the same shot.)

You may think of vegetable soup as a winter dish, but let me remind you that it’s cooler in Ireland than in the US in summer. Plus this is not one of those you have to stew for hours (oh, well, there is that turning on the oven thing). There are plenty of carrots in Ireland, year round, as well as other hearty root vegetables. Kind of reminds me of Massachusetts, where summer vegetables don’t really appear at the farmers’ markets until June or even July, at least in my part of the state. 

The Kalbos Cafe soup
When I ordered the soup (the special of the day) I expected something bland and comforting, but what I hadn’t expected was an intense red blast of color. As you might guess, the “body” of the soup come from the carrots, but the color comes from beets (or beetroot, as they call it there--I had to ask). Both are root vegetables with a fairly high sugar content. Roast them and they caramelize a bit, adding a sweet element to the soup, and a deeper flavor.

I’ll confess, I looked for recipes online, but they all looked like ordinary carrot soup—orange. None had this wonderful rich red color. Let me add that the dominant flavor is carrot, not beet (as a child I used to gag at the taste of beets, so I’m still wary of them).

At the café it was served simply, with a piece of brown bread and some butter. If you want to dress it up, you could add a dollop of sour cream and a sprig of dill or another herb. Also note that this is vegan—all vegetable, unless you want to use chicken stock. It’s simple, healthy and tasty—what more could you ask?

Roasted Carrot Soup


1 lb carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
1/2 lb beets, peeled and cut into chunks
1 medium onion, thickly sliced
2 Tblsp good olive oil

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a bowl, toss the carrots, beets and onion with the olive oil, then spread them in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet. 

Roast for about 20 minutes, stirring a couple of times (so they don’t stick), until they are tender and beginning to brown around the edges.

4 cups stock (chicken or vegetable)
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Place the cooked vegetables in a large saucepan. Add the stock, cover and bring to a boil. Simmer over low heat until all the vegetables are tender (about 20 minutes).

Bought this at a yard sale across the street
for $3. I've used it a lot.
Puree the soup in a blender or food processor (to whatever smoothness you desire), or use an immersion blender. Keep the soup warm in the pan, and season with the salt and pepper. (If it's too thick for you, add a bit more stock, or even water.)

Serve in deep bowls. If you want to dress it up, add a dollop of crème fraiche and maybe a sprig of dill. Serve immediately. (This recipe makes about four servings.)

My nod to the Fourth of July: it's
red, white and blue!

Note: in winter you can add other vegetables as well—butternut squash, parsnips, sweet potato—to make it a heartier soup. You can also spice it up with a dash of pepper sauce or chile powder—it’s a very versatile recipe!

My feeble effort to add an Irish design

I'll stop rambling on about all things Irish soon, I promise. I am working on other books, really--the next Irish one (still nameless), another Orchard mystery, another Relatively Dead story, a short story or two...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Something Warm and Toasty—Easy Veggie Soup…in the Slow Cooker


It doesn’t take a whole lot for me to get in the mood for soup.

And when we suddenly experienced a 20 degree temperature difference in just a couple of days time (from the mid-90s to the mid-70s), I decided it was time to bring out soup ingredients!

Lest you think I’m a cold-weather wimp, it is going down into the 40s at night. We think that’s pretty chilly for October here.

But I’m still experiencing the fall-time-crunch. So I brought out my handy-dandyrival_crockpot Crockpot so I could cook my soup slowly and really get the flavors mixing—and have the soup ready at the end of the day when it was time to feed hungry kids.

This recipe is a no-brainer. In fact…there really isn’t a recipe at all for me. I just put things in the pot until I’ve got the consistency where I want it. And the ingredients change, too—they’re just whatever I have on hand at the time.

The one special ingredient that this recipe has that I think helps out a lot with the taste is vegetable juice as the base. I use a low-sodium V-8 juice because, if you use canned vegetables at all then you’ll definitely get enough sodium. And the V-8 juice gives a nice spicy taste to the soup without the need to add spices.

This recipe makes a lot. I usually freeze about half of it. So you’ll want to adjust it down if you’d rather not freeze any.

IMG_20101005_171343 Easy Veggie Soup

1 bottle vegetable juice (I used the 46-oz. size. It makes a lot.)
1 cup lima beans
1 small onion
3/4 can of beef broth
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup cubed, peeled potatoes
1 1/2 cups corn
2 peeled and sliced carrots
1 package frozen soup vegetables/mixed veggies
1/4 cup red wine

Put all the ingredients in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

And enjoy the warmth! :)

Delicious and Suspicious (July 6 2010) Riley Adams
Finger Licking Dead (June 2011)… Riley Adams
Pretty is as Pretty Dies –Elizabeth Spann Craig