Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Vegan Thanksgiving, Part II: Carrot, Apple, & Leek Soup

I’m now into the active planning stages of my Thanksgiving menu. I have multiple documents arranged by food, course, and recipe source. And, after all of this organization, I’m ready to really begin making some things. So, last night I started with my potential first course. I found a recipe in Vegetarian Times for a Winter Squash, Apple, and Leek soup with Cider Crème Fraiche. Obviously, I won’t be partaking of the Crème Fraiche, but I was wildly intrigued by the soup. The other roadblock between this recipe and my mouth, is the fact that my mom is not a fan of squash. Since she is providing the pots, pans, ingredients, stove, oven, and kitchen generally, I do have to take her opinions into account. But, this was easily remedied, when I suggested substituting carrots for the squash. What resulted from this adaptation was a creamy, smooth, and filling soup, with bright color, and even brighter flavor, grounded by the butteriness of the leeks, and the sweetness of the apples. I think I’ve found my starter for Thanksgiving Dinner!

1 pound carrots (about 6 medium carrots) chopped roughly
1 apple cored and quartered
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 leeks sliced (only the white and light green part)
2 cloves garlic minced
1 cup white wine
6 cups vegetable stock
1 bay leaf

Heat oven to 400º. Place carrots and apple in a baking pan. Cover with 1 cup water, cover with foil and place in the oven. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the carrots and apple are tender.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large pot. Add the leeks and sauté until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of the white wine and cook until almost completely absorbed. Add the apple, carrots and stock to the pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes. Purée the contents of the pot with an immersion blender (this could also be done in a traditional blender). Add the remaining 1/2 cup of wine. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve immediately!

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