If there is one food that I never get sick of, it’s soup. The same goes for my husband and my little one. Yup we are a family of serious soup connoisseurs. We love all varieties and we do not discriminate according to season! You know some people are fair weather- er, rather bad weather soup eaters, but not us. We love a great bowl of hot soup on a 90 degree day as well. Right now it is FAR from 90 degrees out though. It’s more like 9 degrees, and we just got a HUGE ice storm here in Michigan. And nothing warms the soul like a rich and nourishing bowl of Roasted Winter Vegetable Soup!
This soup is particularly wonderful for a couple of reasons. It is SUPER rich and thick so you only need a little bit to satisfy you. You wouldn’t think it would be so rich and hardy because there is no meat in this soup, although you could add some at the end if you wanted. Roasted Winter Vegetable Soup would make an excellent first course if you’re having company over because you can prepare it ahead of time and then just reheat it on the stove top. It’s also really inexpensive because it’s mostly just root vegetables, yet it’s still tres elegante!
The rich, deep flavor of Roasted Winter Vegetable Soup is accomplished through the proper roasting of the veggies! If you don’t get good color and caramelization on the vegetables, the soup will be bland and I do not appreciate a bland soup. So I’m going to give a quick primer on vegetable roasting, for those of you that are veggie-roasting novices. There are a few key components to roasting:
- High temperature. For roasting veggies, you need to have your oven temperature up to at least 400 degrees F. I usually do 425, and sometimes 450 depending on what it is.
- The veggies need space! You can’t crowd your tray. Each veg needs to have full contact with the tray. If you crowd your veggies, they will steam- not roast!
- Proper seasoning. Do NOT by shy with the salt and pepper. The salt will help draw the water out of the veggies and allow them to caramelize and the sugars in the vegetables to develop.
- Don’t keep flipping your veggies! You only need to turn the veggies once about halfway through cooking. If you keep stirring them around, they won’t have a chance to caramelize.
There! Now you know how to roast ANY vegetable (just about)!
- 2 large onions, cut into eighths
- 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch dice
- 2 lbs of carrots, peeled and cut into 2 inch dice
- 1 head (yes head) of garlic, cloves peeled
- 4 tbsp coconut oil
- sea salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups chicken stock (Homemade is best- learn how to make your own here, but if you don’t have homemade, go with a quality boxed brand like this)
- 3 tbsp pure grade B maple syrup
- *optional- plain Greek yogurt, kefir or cream for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Distribute the onions, garlic, sweet potatoes and carrots evenly on a sheet tray- it will likely require two trays.
- Top the vegetables with coconut oil. You can melt the oil ahead of time if it is solid, or wait until it melts in the oven and then stir it around. Season GENEROUSLY with sea salt and pepper.
- Roast for 25-35 minutes until vegetables are tender, flipping halfway through cooking.
- When the veggies have roasted, transfer them into a large pot on the stove top. Add just enough chicken stock to cover the veggies by 1 inch.
- Put the lid on and bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer with the lid cracked for 10 minutes.
- Now you get to puree your soup! You can do this in a blender, but do it in small batches so that it doesn’t explode on you. But I love to use my immersion blender (I have this one and I love it). It’s convenient and you don’t have to mess with all of the transferring and what not.
- Taste and season with sea salt and pepper if needed.
- Spoon it up and eat it as is, or stir in a bit of cream or yogurt- whatever you prefer. Enjoy!
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