This past Sunday was our last Farmers' Market for the season :( Yes, I will miss it, so I indulged in some retail therapy - produce style!
I bought a 40 lb box of apples which will store well in our garage, 3 beautiful Red Kuri squash, organic garlic, and I also bought some lovely looking parsnip which I used in this soup last night.
Do you like parsnip? If not, have you ever had it roasted? The flavor is much better than if you have ever had parsnip boiled with other veggies like carrots or turnips. Their natural sugars develop and they caramelize and develop a sweet earthy flavor.
I was feeling the fall coolness since Sunday, and with these parsnip on hand and a very large fennel bulb, I decided to make my Pureed Roasted Parsnip and Fennel Soup from TEV... but, with a few changes.
Here is what changed:
1. I didn't have quite enough parsnip. I did have a parsley root that I also bought at the market. It was my first time using it, and I enjoyed it. It looked very much like parsnip, but with a definite parsley aroma. Parsnip has a parsley-like flavor, so they complemented each other well. I was still short, so I used a sweet potato. Not an orange sweet potato - a yellow flesh sweet potato. With these three veggies, I yielded 6 cups, chopped/sliced.
2. I had one very large fennel bulb, and this was equivalent to two smaller bulbs that I usually use in this soup. Either way, it will yield about 3 1/2 - 4 cups roughly chopped... yes, this was one BIG fennel bulb!
3. I roasted the veg on one baking sheet instead of two. As always, I line with parchment paper, and because my baking sheet is quite large (sometimes called a jelly roll pan), I put everything on this one sheet. They needed the hour plus another few minutes since the veggies did not have as much room on the one pan, but that was fine, the soup wasn't rushed.
Here are the veggies before going into the oven...
and now all toasty roasty done
While the veggies were roasting, I prepped the other ingredients, and cooked up the onions and broth. Then, the roasted veg are added to the soup pot, blended with an immersion blender
fresh rosemary stirred in
and the soup cooks for another 5 or so minutes and then served... ahhhhh!
Unlike baking, where even small changes can ruin a recipe, substitutions can often be made in cooking with lovely results. This soup worked beautifully with the addition of the parsnip root and sweet potato. Other veggies that would work nicely in here are celery root and rutabaga, and even a small amount of white potato. If you like parsnip, you will really enjoy this soup... hey, even my parsnip-phobic husband had two big bowls of this last night! Go figure.