My post recipe today isn’t very celebratory; we celebrated this weekend. But this little soup is one of the most elegant and certainly the silkiest I’ve ever had. It highlights the pure flavor of parsnips, ever so faintly floral. Then you taste the celeriac, rather delicate. And then comes the earthy note of the turnip. It was a nice surprise last night; we ate it while we watched the blizzard, a beautiful snowfall our local weatherman has dubbed the second mega storm of the season. I don’t know about mega anything, but the view from my desk is lovely now, a dusting of snow on every tree branch, a little cap on the chimneys across the street, and houses perched on a blanket of white. Today my friend Sonja is skiing up the block for coffee and a nibble. Fresh snow, good company, a pot of soup, satisfying work, and a birthday cake and kisses after dinner. Perfect day. …And it’s snowing again!
Creamy Parsnip, Celeriac, & Turnip Soup Tips
Parsnips resemble carrots in shape, though their ends are slightly more bulbous. They are pale yellow orange. Look for firm parsnips, and peel and dice them as you would a carrot.
Celeriac is a root vegetable related to celery which shares its delicate flavor. It is a knobbly orb with a tough, unsightly outer surface, and is light brown in color. To peel it, slice off both ends with a sharp knife. Then place the celeriac cut down for stability, and slice off the fibrous outer surface in a downward curve from top to bottom. Rotate and continue until all of the outer surface has been removed. Slice it into discs, the discs into sticks, and the sticks into a dice.
Turnips are a bulbous root vegetable, white and purple in color. You may peel them with a vegetable peeler. Then slice off the ends, slice into discs, the discs into sticks, and the sticks into a dice.
Leeks are related to onions and garlic and have a soft onion flavor. They look like overgrown scallions. They can harbor quite a bit of grit, so wash them well, especially between the layers.
Creamy Parsnip, Celeriac, & Turnip Soup
Yield: about 12 servings
8 large parsnips, peeled and diced
1 large celeriac, peeled and diced
2 medium turnips, peeled and diced
1 medium leek, trimmed of its hairy and green fibrous ends, washed, and diced
Chicken stock to cover, about 8 c. (homemade recipe here or Swanson’s organic)
salt and pepper
½ c. heavy cream (I love Cedar Summit Farms.)
- Place all of the vegetables in a large soup pot and cover them with chicken stock. Season with pepper and a little salt, cover the pot, and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting and simmer gently until the vegetables are quite tender, about 30 minutes.
- Puree the soup until it is very silky with an immersion blender, or in batches in a conventional blender.
- Stir in the heavy cream.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.