Wednesday, 2 December 2009
I make no secret about the fact that I just love parsnips. Boiled, roasted, fried, mashed . . . I'll take em any way that I can get em!!
It's been so cold here. In fact today we had our first frost of the year, which seems a bit early to me, but then . . . it is December and that is to be expected. At least the rain held off today. I'm afraid that one does get quite, quite sick of rain over here . . . I'd ruther have snow.
Along with the cooler temperatures, comes the desire to eat warm and comforting foods. . . foods like this tasty soup.
It's thick and rich, and oh-so-delicious! Full of the sweet flavour of parsnip, carrot, and chestnut, and the lovely smokey flavours of spanish chorizo sausage. It's also very filling, so it makes a meal in and of itself.
All you need to go with it, is a crusty loaf, warm from the oven . . . with sweet butter to gild it's crusty edges.
The chorizo and the hot pepper flakes give it a tasty bite, that warms the cockles of the heart.
This be comfort food, plain and simple.
*Parsnip, Chorizo and Chestnut Soup*
Serves 4 to 6
This is a rich and full flavoured soup. Just perfect after a chilly winter walk. It's quite heavy and rich so a little goes a long way. Serve hot with some crusty bread for the perfect
125g raw chorizo, peeled and chopped
1 medium white onion, peeled and chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
1 stick of celery, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
3 parsnips, peeled and chopped
1/4 tsp dried chili flakes
1 tsp ground cumin
200g peeled, cooked chestnuts
(fresh or vaccum packed)
1 litre of hot vegetable stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Place the chorizo into a large saucepan and heat gently for several minutes, until the oil is released from the chorizo and it becomes slightly crispy. Lift out with a slotted spoon and set aside. Keep warm. Add the onion, garlic, celery, carrot and parsnips to the pan, stirring to coat them with the oil. Cover and let sweat over low heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the chili flakes and cumin. Stir and cook until quite fragrant. Season to taste with some salt and pepper. Add the hot stock and the chestnuts. Cover and simmer over low heat for 25 to 30 minutes, or until all the vegetables and chestnuts are very tender. Puree with a stick blender until smooth, or in a regular blender. (with care) Ladle into warmed soup bowls and scatter some of the crispy chorizo over top of each to serve.