We’re welcoming the official start of spring today, but around these parts, we know full well it’ll be a while before we can reliably shed ourselves of our winter layers.
So what to eat when spring’s calling, but the temps outside stubbornly hang on to winter and the farmers markets have yet to summon any of the new season’s green glory? You won’t be surprised to learn we’re turning to our favorite soups. For their ability to take the edge off any lingering chills, sure, but also because we just learned a neat way to get that soup to us sans pot.
The tip comes to us from Sarah Britton of My New Roots. Her recipe for Clever Parsnip Oven Soup from her latest cookbook, Naturally Nourished: Healthy, Delicious Meals Made with Everyday Ingredients lives up to its moniker and has Britton taking a major shortcut in the kitchen.
“I call it ‘oven soup’ because most of the work is done in the oven by roasting the main ingredients together, then throwing them into a blender with hot water or broth and spices,” she tells us. “Ta-da, no need to dirty even a single pot!”
“I like this method because it’s so simple, and most of the cooking time is completely unattended. All you need to do is prep the veggies, pop them in a hot oven, and walk away until everything is ready to blend.” Roasting the vegetables also deepens the flavor, giving the parsnips and onions a chance to caramelize in a way that boiling would never yield.
“The beans in the recipe add a delicious creaminess, and deliver oodles of protein and filling fiber, with not a drop of dairy,” explains Britton. “While the veggies are roasting, I boil water in the kettle and dissolve a high-quality vegetable bouillon cube instead of using fresh stock, to keep things even easier.”
If parsnips aren’t your thing, Sarah recommends trying this method out with any root vegetable that you likely have kicking around this time of year: carrots, sweet potatoes, beets, and even winter squashes would all make delicious stand-ins.
- 1 small head of garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil or ghee
- 2 pounds (1kg) parsnips
- 3 medium yellow onions
- 6 cups (1.5L) vegetable broth or water
- 1 1/2 cups (250g) (about one 15.5-oz. can) white beans, such as cannellini, great northern, or navy, drained and rinsed
- 1 to 2 teaspoons fine sea salt (use 1 teaspoon if using broth; 2 teaspoons if using water)
- 1 tablespoon cold-pressed olive oil, plus more for serving
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Freshly ground black pepper, for serving
- Parsley leaves, for serving (optional)
What’s your favorite late winter–early spring dish? Share them with us below!