Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Roasted Turnip & Parsnip Soup with Toasted Walnuts

I spent the past couple of weeks in Southern California visiting my family. The Santa Anas were in full force. Santa Ana winds are a So Cal phenomenon where strong winds blow east to west versus the more typical west to east. The weather was very hot, dry and windy during my entire trip. We tended to eat a lot of salads, fruit and light meals.  No oven or dishes cooked over a hot stove. So it was quite the contrast to come back to Taos where the nights have been below freezing the past few days.  Driving to yoga at 7:30 am with 28 degree temps signals fall is here! Time for the oven...time for long simmering dishes cooked on the stove top.

Fall is the perfect time for homemade soup.  Warming, comforting, filling, paired with a salad and dinner is served.  Today I roasted root vegetables and pureed them into vegetable broth.  The roasting delivers sweetness and richness. The soup does not contain any cream so it is light and rich at the same time.  This one will be on the menu often during the cold fall and winter months.

Roasted Turnip & Parsnip Soup with Toasted Walnuts
2 turnips, unpeeled and diced
2 parsnips, unpeeled and diced
1 medium white onion, diced
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 tsp coarse sea salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
2 1/2 cups water
2 cups organic vegetable broth
1/4-1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
sea salt
black pepper
3 tbsp walnut halves, toasted and chopped
extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
2 tbsp fresh chives, snipped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.  Add turnips, parsnips and onion to sheet.  Drizzle 2 tbsp olive oil over top. Using your hands, roll vegetables in the oil until covered. Sprinkle 1 tsp (each) salt and pepper over vegetables and place in preheated oven. Roast for 30 minutes. Stir and roast an additional 10-15 minutes or until vegetables are very soft and deeply caramelized. (Do not allow them to burn). Remove from oven.

Heat large stockpot over medium high heat. Add 1 tbsp olive oil and the garlic. Saute for 30 seconds. Pour in roasted vegetables scraping in browned bits and olive oil from pan. Add thyme, parsley, water and broth. Raise heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 35 minutes.

Remove from heat. Discard thyme and, using an immersion blender*, puree until smooth. If soup is too thick, thin with water. Stir in 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes.  Taste and adjust seasonings if needed. Add additional 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes if you like it a bit spicier.

Serve in large bowls topped with walnuts, chives and drizzled with olive oil.

It is "turnips" week at Food Network's Fall Fest roundup. Check out the other delicious sounding recipes from my blogger friends. Do you have a favorite turnip recipe? Share in the comments section and/or link to your blog if you have one. 
Feed Me Phoebe: Mashed Turnips with Miso Butter
The Lemon Bowl: Baked Turnip Chips
Purple Cook: Turnip and Tomato Curry, Recipe Reviewed
Domesticate Me: Roasted Root Vegetable Salad with Herbed Goat Cheese
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Easy Roasted Root Vegetables
Red or Green: Roasted Turnip and Parsnip Soup with Toasted Walnuts
Dishing: Roasted Turnips with Parmesan
Taste With The Eyes: Quinoa Corn Timbale, Turnip Confit, Quail Egg and Fried Sage with a Demi-Glace
The Sensitive Epicure: Mashed Turnips with Celery Root
Devour: 4 Ways to Cook Turnips
In Jennie's Kitchen: Turnip Soup
Cooking With Elise: Turnip Farmers Tell All
FN Dish: Turnip Recipes Revisited

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