Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Leek, Fennel and Smallage Soup

V and I haven't updated the blog in a while, shame on us. I could say we have been very busy dealing with our CSA vegetable box, but that is stretching it a bit!! However, we have been enjoying experimenting with the new vegetables in our weekly box. A few weeks back we got "Smallage", a wonderfully fragrant vegetable reminiscent of celery. I combined the stalk with baby leeks and fennel (also from the box) to make pureed soup. It was absolutely yummy!

Our farm website refers to smallage as "Soup Celery or Cutting Celery". Here's what Wikiipedia says about smallage:

The wild form of celery is known as smallage. It has a furrowed stalk with wedge-shaped leaves, the whole plant having a coarse, earthy taste, and a distinctive smell. The stalks are not usually eaten (except in soups or stews in French cuisine), but the leaves may be used in salads, and its seeds are those sold as a spice.[9] With cultivation and blanching, the stalks lose their acidic qualities and assume the mild, sweetish, aromatic taste particular to celery as a salad plant.

Here's the recipe for my pureed soup.

1 bunch smallage
1 bunch fennel
1 bunch baby leek
2-3 cups vegetable broth
Butter or vegetable oil to saute
1/4 cup Yogurt (not too sour) or cream if you prefer
2-3 cloves garlic minced
1 very small piece ginger sliced
1 pinch cumin powder
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped parsley for garnish

1. Cut off the rough portions of the leek and fennel (optionally save this for making vegetable broth). Clean thoroughly and chop
2. Cut the leaves of the smallage and save them for salad. Wash and chop the stem
3. Heat butter / oil in a pan, and add the minced garlic and ginger.
4. Add the chopped vegetables and saute till they are soft
5. Add the vegetable broth and heat through
6. Grate some nutmeg in to the pot, and add the salt, pepper and cumin powder and switch off
7. When it is cool enough, puree in a blender with the yogurt (or cream though I prefer yogurt)
8. Heat through again if desired and serve immediately with a dollop of yogurt and some chopped parsley on top

Roasted Fennel

Hmmmm.. this soup smells absolutely wonderful! We got fennel bulbs a couple of times, and got the smallage just once from the farm, and wish we had gotten these wonderfully aromatic veggies more times!

This recipe is for JFI: Fennel hosted at Siri's Corner.

1 comment:

Siri said...

the soup looks so appetizing. Thanks :)