As I write this, we're having the blizzard of 2016. We are expecting about 2 1/2 feet of snow from this storm when it ends (Postscript: We got 28+ inches). Needless to say, I am happy to have planned ahead so that I could stay inside and make some heart and soul warming soup.
The only thing in my garden right now that is still growing is carrots. Cold temps enhance root veggies like this - turns the starch into extra sweetness. For this recipe, I combined parsnips and carrots, two great cool-temperature garden assets, into a delicious soup that was just right for this blizzard.
Carrot and Parsnip Soup
Yields 8-10 servings
2 lb. carrots, peeled & cut into 1-inch pieces
1 lb. parsnips, peeled & cut into 1-inch pieces
3 TBSP olive oil
1 3/4 cups chopped shallots
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp grated fresh ginger, (use a microplane or small grater)
1/2 cup white wine
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
7 cups vegetable stock
Salt & pepper to taste
Fresh parsley, chopped for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Mix carrots and parsnips with 1 TBSP of the oil, salt & pepper in a large bowl. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast, stirring halfway through, until the veggies are tender; about 45-50 minutes. Set aside.
- In a dutch oven or large heavy pot, heat the remaining 2 TBSP olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently until translucent, about 5-6 minutes.
- Add the garlic and ginger and stir frequently, about 30 seconds.
- Add the wine and stir frequently, about 2 minutes or until the wine is mostly absorbed.
- Add the carrots, parsnips, thyme & stock and bring to an active simmer.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Remove from heat and use an immersion blender to blend all ingredients to a creamy texture. Alternatively, puree soup in batches in a blender, transferring each batch to a bowl until entirely combined.
- Add salt & pepper to taste.
- Serve immediately, adding a sprinkle of chopped parsley for garnish.
I'm Catherine, a small-space urban gardener in New Jersey (Zone 7a) who started gardening out of upcycled wooden wine boxes. For years, I wanted to try gardening, but didn't know where to start. I got up the nerve to give it a try - starting small with a single wooden wine box that turned an idea into reality. That reality quickly turned into my filling every sunny inch of space of my postage-stamp size lawn and turning it into a garden oasis. I grow mostly vegetables and herbs with some exception for fruits (when the squirrels and rabbits don't get to them first). I love learning from gardening communities (and lots of trial and error).
I hope one day to take all that I'm learning and apply it to a larger plot of land. To help me get there, I'm extending my learning through the University of Massachusetts, Stockbridge School of Agriculture's, Sustainable Food & Farming program. (I'm addicted to learning as much as I am to gardening.)
This blog isn't just for gardeners (although I hope it inspires some of you to try growing a plant or two). The recipes (food & cocktails) in theRecipes section of this blog contain ingredients that don't have to come from your own backyard. If you like visiting your local farmer's market(or even your grocery store) and would like to get some new recipes you can use with the fresh produce and herbs you get from your local growers, this blog will have plenty for you too.
In addition to gardening and cooking, I also love to visit and photograph my surroundings. I feel fortunate to have so many amazing places here in New York/New Jersey, where I live and work. Visits to local farms, farmer's markets, and cycling through rural farming areas help me feel connected and refreshed. share these experiences in theExploring section of the blog so that you might visit through proxy or be inspired enough to visit yourself.
With very few exceptions, all of the photographs on this site are ones I have taken myself. (For the photographers out there, I shoot with a Canon 7D and sometimes with my Lumix DMC-ZS15 compact camera.)
I hope this blog inspires you to grow, create, explore, and try something new. The best way to stay up-to-date is to follow me using the social buttons above, or click Subscribe and sign up for my email newsletters.
Happy Gardening and Healthful Living!