Sprained & Broken Soup

By • March 3, 2011 • 8 Comments



Author Notes: Sitting in the Emergency Room, waiting for the doctor to tell me what was wrong (two broken toes in my right foot and a grade 3 sprain in my left ankle) I had visions of this soup dancing in my head. When I discovered that this was the contest for the week, I decided that it was fate and I had to submit my recipe.

But this recipe is not really about carrots. Kind readers, if you will bear with me I will tell you a tale about a man … a man who works 60+ hours a week trying to convince Congress that the DoD doesn’t really need all that money. I man with a quick, smart humor and a quiet grace that hasn’t been dulled by the evil back-stabbers here in Washington. A man, who, on the eve of his 30th birthday and with a major report due, spent the evening standing in a corner of the kitchen, gentle and patient, while his girlfriend murmured commands through a profanity-laced stream of complaints about crutches.

This recipe is about my boyfriend, who right now, deserves credit for being The Most Wonderful Boyfriend in the World. That he can put up with my present mood and condition, that he can be so supportive, is surely a sign that he is a Saint.

And this recipe will stand as a testament to that.
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Serves 6

  • 2 fennel bulbs, fronds removed, quartered (Reserve a few of the fronds for garnish.)
  • 1 pound pound carrots, peeled and quartered
  • 1 apple, quartered (I used a Fiji because that’s what I had.)
  • 1/2 red onion, quartered
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 stalk rosemary, broken in half
  • 1/2 red onion, minced
  • 3-4 celery stalks, minced
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp tomato paste
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • pinch or two cayenne
  • 4 cups homemade or good quality chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a rimed baking sheet with foil.
  2. Spread the first six ingredients on the baking sheet and toss with some olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, turning occasionally. Unless, of course, it is an ordeal for you to maneuver a hot roasting pan while holding yourself up in crutches. If so, just let them roast and hope the people on Food52 won’t notice the few black flecks in the picture that are where the onions … err … caramelized.
  3. Set a large stockpot over medium heat and warm a tablespoon or so of olive oil. Add the next three ingredients (which I took to referring to as a “notpoix”) and stir to coat. Add a pinch or two of salt, give them another good stir, put a lid on, lower the heat a little and let them soften.
  4. When the onions, celery and garlic are nearly translucent push them to the side pot and add the tomato paste, letting it carmalize for a few minutes. Stir it into the veggies.
  5. Add the coriander, cumin and as much cayenne as your taste desires (I like this a little spicier so I add about 1/8 tsp.) and stir to blend and coat.
  6. You should be ready to pull the roasting vegetables out of the oven now. Give your boyfriend a pathetic look and burst into tears when he gets up to remove them from the oven, stopping to kiss your forehead and remind you that you will be well again soon. Thank the Universe that he is with you. Scowl at your feet.
  7. Set the roasted vegetables aside while you add the chicken stock to the stockpot. Bring it just to a boil and turn off the heat.
  8. Put some of the roasted vegetables (a large fistful sized amount) in a food processor or blender and add about cup of the stock and “notpoix.” Blend until smooth. Pour into yet another stockpot (Thank the Universe for your wonderful boyfriend again.) and set aside.
  9. Repeat this process until all of the vegetables and stock are blended. If you feel like you need more liquid, add a little water to compensate.
  10. Heat the puree over medium-low heat until warmed through, maybe 5 minutes.
  11. Turn off the heat and add the heavy cream, stirring to blend.
  12. Serve, garnishing with some chopped fennel fronds.
  13. Burst into tears again when your amazing boyfriend pronounces it a success, and selflessly cleans up the kitchen while refilling your cups of tea and telling silly jokes to make you laugh. Continue to scowl at your feet.
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Tags: carrot, Fennel, roast, Soups, spices

Comments (8) Questions (0)

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over 3 years ago Midge

What a sweet boyfriend. And the soup sounds killer. Hope you get back on your feet soon.

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over 3 years ago checker

Thank you Midge. He's pretty great, and with Spring looming I am ready to be mobile!

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over 3 years ago checker

Oh - and the apple was peeled.

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over 3 years ago checker

Thank you everyone! I am healing fast - I start physical therapy in two weeks and I am eager to get it going. And the wonderful boyfriend to whom this is dedicated will be driving me to and from PT, twice a week, so maybe I need to come up with another tribute recipe...

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over 3 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Wow....Great story and recipe. I hope you feel better soon.

Mrs._larkin_370

over 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Love this! Another great story. And recipe. Keep 'em coming, please. Sorry about your feet. Happy about your boyfriend. :)

Gator_cake

over 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Love your story! Hope you heal soon. Soup and boyfriend sound wonderful.

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over 3 years ago checker

Lord, I have a million typos in this. Sorry. I'm off the pain medication now, so what's my excuse?