Parsnip Chowder with Crispy Sage
Brrrrr …. another cold snap in ICT! Perfect night to try a warm new soup recipe and build a fire. Tonight's culinary adventure came about due to my new found love of parsnips. I dislike root vegetables …. beets, rutabagas, turnips even carrots, all except the delightful parsnip! If you think you don't like them, give them a try with this recipe.
Prep Time 10 minutes Cook Time 45 minutes Total Time 55 minutes Servings 4
4 tablespoons ghee or extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves crushed
4 cups peeled and finely diced parsnips about 2 pounds
4 cups peeled and finely diced russet potatoes about 2 pounds, or 2 large potatoes
1 teaspoon finely chopped sage leaves
1 teaspoon sea salt
4 cups vegetable broth
2 cups full fat coconut milk
8 sage leaves
Heat the ghee or oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until golden brown and fragrant, about 2 minutes.
I used a life changing new gadget for the garlic, it's a silicon garlic peeler, honestly - you NEED one of these!!
Remove and discard the cloves. Stir in the parsnips and potatoes. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and beginning to caramelize (don’t worry if they stick or form brown bits on the bottom of the pot).
Add the chopped sage, salt, broth and coconut milk. Bring to a simmer and cook for 30 to 40 minutes, until the potatoes are very soft and the liquid has reduced slightly.
We don't keep vegetable stock in the house, so I used chicken bouillon to create chicken stock. When I use bouillon to make stock, I don't add any additional salt if the recipe calls for it. Bouillon itself is incredibly salty.
Meanwhile, make the crispy sage: in a small saucepan heat a thin layer of olive oil over medium heat. Add the sage and cook until crispy, about 2 minutes. Remove to a towel-lined plate and reserve the scented oil for another use (or drizzle it over the soup at the end).
In all honesty, the crispy sage looked great, but didn't add very much to the chowder, so if you skip this step, you're not going to miss it.
Using an immersion blender or a stand blender, blend half the soup, leaving some texture and chunks. Divide between 4 bowls and garnish with the crispy sage. The soup will keep for several days in an airtight container in the fridge.
I make a potato leek soup that uses the same concept of blending it before serving it, but you blend the entire pot to make it all creamy. I think next time that is what I will do with this. It won't be a chowder then, but it will still be warm and yummy!