Holiday recap, part 3: super soup

Posted in cooking

Wow, it’s been a busy week! I meant to post this a few days ago, but haven’t had the time until this lovely Sunday morning. I hope 2009 has been good to all of you so far.

So, I’ve talked about our main holiday meal, but we also did a soup appetizer to kick things off – a lovely celery root ‘bisque’ flavoured with thyme. I’d had this once before; the person who oversees clinic operations where I work made it as part of a lunch for all of us a few months ago. I decided to veganize it and make it as part of our dinner.

My only comment is that the soup is VERY celery tasting. That’s to be expected, since the main ingredients are celery root and celery. I wouldn’t serve this alone – either serve it as an appetizer, as we did, or serve it with a little something else, like a sandwich or flavoured bread.

Celery root 'bisque'

Veganized Celery Root ‘Bisque’

Original recipe from Bon Appetit, lightly modified (to be vegan) by me. Usually a bisque gets it’s thickness from cream, but this version uses a pureed potato instead.

* 1/4 cup olive oil
* 1 cup chopped celery
* 1/2 cup coarsely chopped shallots (about 3 large)
* 2 pounds celery roots (celeriac), peeled, woody parts trimmed and discarded, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 5 1/2 cups)
* 1 10-ounce russet potato, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
* 5 cups low-salt vegetable broth
* 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
* 1/4 cup plain soy milk
* Additional chopped fresh thyme as garnish

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add celery; cover and cook until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add shallots; sauté uncovered 3 minutes. Stir in celery root cubes and potato, then broth and 1 1/2 teaspoons thyme. Increase heat to high; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 40 minutes. Cool slightly.

Working in batches, transfer soup to blender and puree until smooth. Or, do as I did and use your stick blender to puree it. Just be careful not to splatter it all over your kitchen.

Stir soy milk into soup and bring to simmer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into bowls. Sprinkle with additional chopped thyme and serve.

Read part 2 – Eat your veggies!
Read part 1 – Gravy mishaps.

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