January 12, 2010

Winter Tuber-Root Soup

As the winter turns most of us into hermits in the north, we want a soup that reflects our season of introspection. Boy, does Winter Tuber-Root Soup fit the bill. You could really call this the Potato-Parsnip-Daikon-Leek Soup but that only fills your mouth with words, not food. There are three things that make this a great soup, cheap, filling, re-heatable.

Daikon is a Japanese radish that is in season during winter. Raw, the radish is closer to a sweet horse radish, when cooked it looses it's spiciness and becomes very savory. I opted to use large russet potatoes, because they tend to hold up better and add some texture to the soup. Don't worry, you can easily find all of these ingredients at Meijer.

3 tbl butter (or olive oil)
1/2 Leek
2 Parsnips (cubed)
2 Russet Potatoes (cubed)
1 Daikon (cubed)
6 cups of Water
1 tsp fresh Thyme (chopped)
2 Bay leaves

1. Melt butter in large pot over mid heat
2. Add leek at high-mid heat, salt and cook until leek has wilted.
3. Place thyme in with the leek and stir for about 40 seconds.
4. Add water, potatoes, parsnips, daikon and bay leaves to pot.

5. Let simmer for 15-30 minutes, until the potatoes are tender enough to easily slice through.
6. Fill a blender half-way and blend until you find the right consistency, I like my soup to be a little pulpy.

The only thing you need to do now is either let it sit for a few minutes and then store, or salt and serve. I usually leave out the salt when I am storing it, when salt sits with the soup for too long it changes the flavor. Now your going to be tempted to add some white wine while cooking it the first time, don't. The savoriness that you experience the first time always misses the second time. If you want to add some wine or hard cider, but the soup on the stove top and get it close to a simmer (the soup should steam) before adding the wine/cider and keep a low simmer for five minutes.

This recipe is loosely based on David Lebowitz's, Potato-Leek Soup,' but only loosely.

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