It's nearly summer, and the weather has definitely started to get warm in France (though, to be fair Western France's weather is highly erratic; one day it's 80 F, the next it's 65 F.) Due to a recent mix-up in my shopping list, I had an overabundance of carrots in my refrigerator. And because it's been so warm, I've been craving cool things to cool me down. I've also been quite busy, and have wanted to figure out some dishes that could be done without a lot of effort or time. Combine these three factors and I ended up with this chilled carrot soup.
This soup is incredibly easy to make, and unlike other soups I've cooked, takes almost no time at all. And although I didn't do it this time, for an extra flair, crisp up some shallots to float on top and serve with a french bread crostini (also super-easy to make).
The ingredient list here is very short (is four main ingredients short enough for you?), and the only special equipment you may need is an immersion blender. I prefer my immersion blender over a traditional blender because it takes up far less space in my kitchen and it's far easier to clean as well.
I spiced mine with some curry powder, but I could see using some fresh dill (which I grow in my garden) to add depth of flavor and freshness. I didn't use any additional stock or bouillon because the curry added plenty of flavor, but if you go the fresh herbs route, I suggest adding in a cup or two of vegetable stock (if you want to keep it vegetarian; chicken stock is good, too).
Here's the recipe. As always, if you make this, be sure to post a picture on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and tag it #eatfrenchclub.
Chilled Carrot Soup
- Heat olive oil in a stock pot over medium heat.
- Add shallots and cook until translucent, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add curry powder and stir to mix evenly with shallots.
- Add carrot slices and stir. Cook carrots for about 5-7 minutes, occasionally stirring, until lightly brown carrots (they don't need to be soft, just want to wake up some of the flavor by activating the natural sugars in carrots)
- Add 4 cups of water. Partially cover with stockpot lid and let simmer for approximately 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat to avoid a full-on boil.
- Allow to cool, either on the countertop or in fridge (depending on how quickly you want it to cool).
- Use immersion blender to break down the solid pieces.
- Add creme fraiche and blend until smooth. Add salt to taste.
- Immersion blender