This is a really tasty soup that is full of veggie goodness. It’s perfect for when you want a bowl of something hearty and warming but on the healthy-side. The combination of veggies is so, so good. When making the soup, the key is to saute the carrots, parsnips, and squash for a good amount of time before you add the stock. The veggies will get a little brown in spots during this step, and that makes the soup so flavorful!
The weather has definitely turned a corner here in Chicago and I broke out my winter coat (and hat!) for the first time this week. Having leftovers of this soup in the fridge has been a very, very good idea. A bowl of warm soup for dinner on a cold night is one of my most favorite things.
Happy soup-making! ~Inge
Carrot, parsnip, squash, and kale soup
Adapted only just a tiny bit from Jeanne Lemlin’s excellent Main-Course Vegetarian Pleasures
¼ cup olive oil
2 onions, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 parsnips, thinly sliced
2 carrots, thinly sliced
2 cups of butternut squash, peeled and chopped
2 red potatoes, diced (I don’t bother to peel them)
10 cups veggie stock
½ teaspoon dried thyme (sometimes I leave this out, it still tastes great)
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
4 cups kale, chopped into small pieces
1 16-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1. Heat oil in your favorite soup pot over medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes.
2. Add the parsnips, carrots, and squash to the pot. Stir it up so that everything gets coated in the oil. Cook the veggies for about 15 minutes, stirring often. Jeanne Lemlin advises to not skip this step because it “adds depth to the soup’s flavor.” I absolutely agree. You want the veggies to get a little brown. Don’t worry if any brown pieces stick to the bottom of the pot – they will get taken care of when you add the stock in the next step!
3. Once the veggies are a little browned, add the stock, potatoes, thyme (if using), salt + pepper. Use your wooden spoon to scrape up any veggies that stuck to the bottom of the pot. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 45 minutes, until the veggies are soft.
4. Add the kale and chickpeas. Cook for about 5-10 more minutes. At this point, you could eat the soup as is and it would be delicious. Or, you can puree some of it to get a creamier consistency. It’s your call. I usually just stick my immersion blender in the pot and give it a little whirl. I think blending a little of it up helps marry all the flavors together. Enjoy!