Many of my favorite foods are indelibly linked to memories of places and people. When I was young, my family took a trip to the Isle of Skye in Scotland and spent the holiday doing activities I mostly don’t enjoy at all like rock climbing and sailing. In freezing, misty weather. By this point in my life I knew better than to get in a sailboat with my parents, so I watched from a safe distance while they capsized into absolutely frigid waters and had to be “rescued.” Cue: me laughing, and The Soup. I have a vivid memory of us all wearing navy woolly sweaters, and warming our hands around bowls of carrot and coriander soup. In the way that memories are, it is one of the most delicious things I have ever tasted. The setting wasn’t bad either. I returned to Scotland to study abroad in college and had the chance to visit the Isle of Skye again – and the freezing, misty weather.
I make many versions of fall vegetable soups but this gentle, creamy, and simply flavorful soup is just my favorite. It is so comforting and chock full of all the goodness of carrots.Ditch the cream to maximize the health/diet. And might I point out incredibly easy and quick to make. My preference is to stir in about a half cup of cream at the end. Obviously.I’m the biggest fan ever of the immersion hand blender. I got one about a year ago and have found it indispensable when making soup. I’ve had countless disasters/messes taking soup from a pot, putting it in a blender or food processor, having hot soup spew all over the place, and then transferring it back to the pot.Make a batch and heat for meals during the week, it keeps well and like most soups tastes better the next day. Feel free to serve with fresh cilantro – I’m one of those people who literally cannot even eat a single bite of cilantro and avoid it like the plague.
Carrot and Coriander Soup
- 3 cups of carrots cut in approximately even pieces
- 2 celery stalks, cut into similar sized pieces
- 1/2 of a large onion or 1 small onion, diced
- 3 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 cloves of garlic, diced
- 1 TBS ground coriander
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp salt
- a few grinds of fresh black pepper
- 1/2 to 1 cup heavy cream, depending on your preference
Dice the carrots, onion, and celery into rough pieces.
In a large pot, heat about two tablespoons of olive oil and a tablespoon-ish of butter over medium heat.
Add the vegetables to the pot and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
Add the spices and garlic and stir to combine, allowing the spices to toast for a minute.
Add warmed stock, and bring soup to a boil.
Reduce the heat to a strong simmer and allow the vegetables to cook until fork tender, roughly 15-20 minutes.
Puree the soup until very smooth. I use an immersion blender, you could do this in a blender or food processor.
Pour over heavy cream and stir until blended and warmed. Serve with a garnish of chives or cilantro, with a nice wedge of bread. And some cheese. And maybe some sliced apples. And maybe some charcuterie.
You could totally omit the dairy from this recipe, or stir in a swirl of almond milk or other milk alternative. My preference is to fully puree the carrots but you could choose to puree half, and keep the rest of the soup chunky.