I admit it. I'm the kind of girl who doesn't like to be caught without. When going away for a trip I always pack twice as many pairs of underpants as needed. Just in case. I have sticks of deodorant stashed in multiple places around the house. I even have an extra tube of toothpaste in my car. Unfortunately when it comes to carrots, you can have a little too many. While rummaging around trying to figure out what to make next, I came to believe that there is no logical reason for me to have 10 pounds of carrots in my fridge. Carrots are ridiculously high in beta-carotene and are great for your eyes, they lower cholesterol, and might prevent heart attacks and cancer. But what exactly do you do with 10 pounds of carrots? Or even a healthy chunk of them?
I made soup. Soup is the great equalizer of odds and ends of vegetables. I hunted around for a good carrot soup recipe. This was a little trickier than I thought because I just didn't feel like putting ginger or chillies or anything fancy in it. I wanted carrot soup that was warm and homey and nourishing. So I kinda sorta peeked at the recipe my mother-in-law had posted on her fridge; I would give credit except it's an old photocopy from some unknown cookbook. I added some things and took some things out. I don't personally see the need for heavy cream in a pureed soup very often. It tasted good. Comforting. Homemade. But it needed a garnish. Bear with me, garnishing soups is a pretty recent kick I've been on. Sprinkling it with dried cranberries set it off just right. The sweet tart of the cranberries balance nicely with the salty smoothness of the soup. Yum.
8 Tbsp (1 stick) of butter
15 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 potatoes, peeled & diced
1/2 cup chopped parsley
6 cups chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste
Dried cranberries for garnishing
Melt the butter in a dutch oven over medium high heat, add the carrots, celery, and onion, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring from time to time. Add the potatoes and parsley and stir until coated. Stir in the stock and cook, covered, until the potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes. Puree with a hand blender or food processor. Return to the pot, add salt and pepper to taste and rewarm. Garnish with dried cranberries.