This week's recipe is a bonus - two recipes in one. The first part of this recipe would be a great winter side dish. The second is a hearty, rich soup. I made the soup this week for my book club. I never served the vegetables as a side, but they sure looked delicious. ( From Ina Garten's Family Style Cookbook.)
I made a few small modifications from the original recipe. I added a few cloves of garlic and 3 shallots to the roasting pans, and then blended these into the soup. I also added about 1/2 t cayenne pepper to the soup, to balance the sweetness.
1 pound carrots, peeled
1 pound parsnips, peeled
1 large sweet potato, peeled
1 small butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled and seeded
3-4 cloves garlic (optional)
2-3 shallots, in half (optional)
3 tablespoons good olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Cut the carrots, parsnips, sweet potato, and butternut squash in 1- to 1 1/4-inch cubes. All the vegetables will shrink while baking, so don't cut them too small.
Sprinkle with parsley, season to taste, and serve hot.
6-8 cups chicken stock (look for one with no MSG and low sodium, or make your own)
Roasted Winter Vegetables, recipe above
Cayenne pepper (optional, to taste)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
In small batches, coarsely puree the roasted vegetables and the chicken stock in a blender or food processor. (Be careful not to puree hot liquids in a blender, you could have a kitchen disaster!) Pour the soup back into the pot, and season, to taste. Thin with more chicken stock and reheat. The soup should be thick but not like a vegetable puree, so add more chicken stock and/or water until it's the consistency you like.
This was a terrific soup. Rich and thick, sweet with a hint of spice from the black pepper and cayenne. I served the soup with Brioche Croutons (from the same cookbook) and a crisp winter salad. It was the perfect book club meal.