Thursday, April 7, 2011

Celery Soup: adventures in CSA abundance!

Last weekend I escaped from the cold, rainy north to visit my mom in Florida, where they're already nearing the end of their peak growing season. My mom's fridge was packed to the gills with gorgeous organic CSA produce. We spent a lot of time cooking greens, turnips, beets, squash, tomatoes. It was pretty heavenly.

Her bounty included a few MASSIVE stalks of celery. Celery's one of the "dirty dozen," meaning the conventional stuff is high in nasty chemicals. Not good. This local, organic celery from the farm was tender and sweet. After seeking advice from the internet, we settled on making some Cream of Celery soup. The result was creamy, smooth, and a  gajillion times better than the nasty Campbell's crap that was only fit for mixing into some preservative-laden casserole recipe.

(This recipe is re-posted from the IVU website and is from Nava Atlas's book Vegetarian Soups for All Seasons.) An immersion blender works wonders on this!

Cream of Celery Soup!

  • 10 large celery ribs
  • 2 T margarine or oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 T unbleached white flour
  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • water or broth
  • 2 tsp salt-free herb-and-spice seasoning mix (Mrs. Dash, i.e.)
  • 1/4 c mixed chopped fresh parsley and dill
  • 1/4 c celery leaves
  • 1 to 1-1/2 cups soymilk, as needed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Chopped fresh dill or parsley for garnish
Trim 10 stalks of celery and cut into 1/2-inch dice.
Heat a tablespoon of the margarine in a large soup pot.
Add the onion and garlic and saute over moderate heat until the onion is lightly golden.
Sprinkle in the flour and stir it in until it disappears.
Add the celery, the potatoes, and just enough water to cover.
Bring to a boil, then add the seasoning mix, fresh herbs, and celery leaves.
Simmer over low heat until the vegetables are tender, about 25 minutes. Remove from the heat.
With a slotted spoon, transfer the solid ingredients to the container of a food processor or blender and puree, in batches if necessary, until very smooth.
Stir back into the soup pot.
Return to very low heat and add enough soymilk to achieve a slightly thick consistency.

1 comment:

  1. This looks good! I've been making a lot of creamy vegetable soups lately-- broccoli and white bean, carrot/ginger/whtie bean, etc.. I like this idea! I didn't realize celery was so 'dirty', I'll remember to get organic in particular for this one.