This one is definitely worth sharing here. I’ve just returned from a lovely little trip to Sweden on a job as a retreat chef. A joy as usual! After all the busy-ness, I returned to stay in some ‘gorgeous foresty Swedish place’ with friends for a couple of days to chill out.
To cut a long story short, I had plenty of surplus veggies left over (as you do when making food for 40 people for a few days). Keen to make the most of what was available, I decided to make some delicious goodies to leave behind for my friends, who had kindly welcomed me into their space.
Anyhow, one of the things I had was carrots – lots of them.
I was thinking about something simple that my friends could freeze once I’d gone. So a nice big pan brimming with carrot soup happened.
I had plenty of coconut milk, passata (sieved tomatoes), onions and some ginger. Perfect! So basically, today’s recipe involves pretty simple, easy to get hold of ingredients that transform into a de-e-e-elicious soup.
Let’s give carrots a bit of love It’s easy to take them for granted, but did you know that they are absolutely jam-packed with health affirming goodness?
They are full of antioxidants which can prevent cell damage from oxidative stress on the body. Carrots contain very helpful levels of these antioxidants, each with their own unique protective function (beta-carotene making an especially abundant appearance in orange carrots).
One medium sized carrot (about 75g) is said to give you a whopping 210% of your daily recommended intake of vitamin A. Vitamin A is important for immune function, vision, reproduction, skin health, and cellular communication. In the plant kingdom, carrots come second only to sweet potatoes for their incredible vitamin A content. Carrots are an excellent source of provitamin A, containing the precursor to vitamin A in the form of carotenoids.
Read all about the health benefits of carrots in my article here: The Health Benefits Of Carrots
I am also using smoked paprika in this recipe. Please note that, this is optional. The recipe works delightfully well with or without it.
I used smoked paprika to give it a lovely smoked flavour. Most people love smoked paprika, but if you don’t, just leave it out.
You can adjust the levels of ginger also to your preferred taste.
The ingredients in this pot just dance to perfection. There is something quite magical about the blend of tomato and coconut and the alchemy of carrot and ginger. Add a bit of salt and pepper to season and these simple ingredients are turned into something quite special.
I’ve purposefully not added any beans or pulses to this one. My body seems to prefer less of those, somehow. However, if you feel the need for a higher dose of that kind of thing, you can easily pop in some lentils or beans either before or after blending.
Best way to blend? In this case, the easiest way is to use a hand blender. I would recommend you get a good, high powered one. The good thing about a hand blender is that you can blend in the pan (which saves on having to wash up a blending jug).
You can pulse your hand blender in the soup a few times and leave it nice and rustic… or do what I did and blend until creamy smooth.
You can also use a jug blender to cream it up if that’s all you have, but do be careful when transferring hot soup from the pan.
OK, let’s make this delicious soup…
- 1 large onion
- Dash of olive oil (to saute onion)
- 7 carrots (medium to large size)
- 1 potato (medium sized)
- 800ml water (3½ cups)
- 400ml passata (sieved or crushed tomatoes) (1⅔ cups)
- 2 inches cubed fresh ginger (to be finely grated)
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Big twist black pepper
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional but nice)
- 400ml coconut milk (canned) (1⅔ cups)
- Finely chop the onion and saute in a big soup pan for a couple of minutes.
- Chop the carrot and potato into small cubes and then add to the pan along with the water and passata. Turn on the heat, bring the contents to boiling point and then turn down to simmer.
- Peel and then finely grate the ginger and add to the pan.
- Add the sea salt, pepper, and smoked paprika.
- Cook for about 20 minutes with the lid on, stirring occasionally.
- Add the coconut milk near the end of the cooking period.
- When ready blend with a hand blender and serve.
- This keeps for a few days in the fridge and also freezes really well.
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