Fennel and Leeks

Fennel and Leeks

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Celery Root and Fennel Chowder

We love this recipe for Celery Root and Fennel Chowder so much at our house, that I have prepared it two times in less than two weeks. Although the flavor profile is fairly sophisticated, even Olivia can't get enough of the soup! I was fairly confident that Brad and I would like the recipe, but I would not have guessed that Olivia would appreciate it so much.

The flavor is earthy, savory, and fresh; all at once. Every ingredient is discernible, which isn't always the case with a blended or partially blended soup. Also, it is a Vegan dish, which I am trying to incorporate more into our weekly diets. This is the first recipe I have made that calls for celery root and let me just say that I am now a celery root believer. It may look a little bit funny, but it sure is tasty!

1 large fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced, plus 2 Tbsp fennel fronds reserved for garnish
2 to 3 leeks, white part only, well cleaned and thinly sliced

2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2" dice
1 or 2 shallots, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup minced fresh parsley
1 tsp minced fresh thyme
2 tsp fennel seeds
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
6 cups water
1 large celery root, peeled and cut into 1/2" dice

In a deep soup pot, combined sliced fennel, leeks, potatoes, shallots, garlic, parsley, thyme, fennel seeds, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.

Drizzle olive oil over the top, then stir well until vegetables are evenly coated. Put pot over medium-low heat, cover, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring a few times to keep the vegetables from sticking to bottom of pot. Stir in celery root and water. 

Raise heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Continue to cook at a boil, stirring occasionally, until celery root is tender, about 20 minutes.

Transfer half of mixture to a blender and process until smooth.

Pour puree back into soup pot and stir until well mixed. Taste and adjust seasoning if you like. Serve in warmed soup bowls garnished with fennel fronds.

This recipe has officially become a staple at our house; especially with a thin baguette that is chewy on the outside and soft on the inside. Both times I have prepared the soup, I have served it with Macrina Bakery Sour Ficelle baguette which is made of organic wheat flour, filtered water, and sea salt. As a matter of fact, now that I am writing about the chowder and getting hungry, I think I am going to make it again this week!

Recipe Source:
"Pure Vegan" by Joseph Shuldiner
Pages 146-147

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