Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas is getting nearer and soon we’ll be digging into the turkey, duck, goose or pig, depending on culture and traditions. So why not today, have a meat break but still get the cosy feel of Christmas with this rich (but healthy) carrot soup!
Today we use carrots in a variety of ways – sliced or grated in salads, raw in juices, cooked in stocks, soups and stews; roasted, steamed, sautéed, or boiled as a side dish, baked in bread and cakes. Although carrots are great on their own, adding just a small amount of “good” fat to your carrots will increase the ability to absorb the antioxidants and carotenoids. As many people know carrots are an outstanding source of vitamin A, as they contain the antioxidant carotenoids beta-carotene. Carrots are too, an excellent source of fibre and vitamin K, and a good source of vitamins B6, C and E.
Spicy carrot soup with ginger, chilli and orange
2 large shallots, peeled and chopped
1 leek washed and chopped
2 tsp butter
3-4 kg carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
4 garlic cloves peeled and chopped
1 large red chilli halved lengthways sedges removed and chopped
1 organic orange, zest and juice
100 ml of soy sauce
3 bay leaves
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger root
freely grounded black pepper
2 1/2-3L organic vegetable stock
Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the shallots along with a pinch of salt, and sweat gently for 2 minutes. Stir in the leek and celery and then add chilli and carrots. Stir 5 minutes. Pour in the vegetable stock, orange zest, bay leaves, ginger and soy sauce. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook gently for 30 minutes or until the carrots fall apart when prodded with a fork.
Remove from the heat and puree the soup in batches in a blender. Pour the soup back into the pan and heat gently. Squeeze in the orange juice. Check for seasoning and flavour, The soup should have a deep, warm and spicy flavour.