Celery roasted with a little fennel and garlic and then pureed with chicken broth and potatoes makes for a nice starter or light lunch. A touch of half and half or cream with a spritz of lemon finishes it off. —inpatskitchen
Test Kitchen Notes
WHO: Inpatskitchen is a prolific FOOD52er and -- as a retired teacher, paralegal, and seafood retailer -- a bit of a cook of all trades, too.
WHAT: A simple and elegant twist on cream of celery soup.
HOW: By roasting the celery and fennel, and boiling the potatoes in broth, inpatskitchen builds a lovely foundation of flavors. And of course, cream to finish is always a great idea.
WHY WE LOVE IT: This soup truly elevates humble, plain vegetables that are usually relegated to a garnish plate or side dish to a higher plane of existence. Given proper attention, lo and behold, they shine. —The Editors
- Makes almost 2 quarts
large celery stalks cut into 2 inch pieces
bulb fresh fennel cut into 2 inch chunks
large whole garlic cloves
medium redskin potatoes, peeled and cut into a 1 1/2 inch dice
light cream or half and half
fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper for re seasoning if needed
Celery leaves and fennel fronds for a little garnish
- Place the cut celery, fennel and cloves of garlic in a 9x13 inch roasting pan. Add the salt, pepper and olive oil and toss to thoroughly coat everything. Roast in a 350F oven for 40 to 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the edges of the vegetables just begin to brown.
- While the vegetables are cooking, cook the potatoes in the chicken broth until tender..about 10 to 12 minutes. Set the pan aside to cool a bit.
- When the vegetables have finished roasting add them to the potatoes and broth. Let everything cool a bit.
- In a blender puree the soup in batches. If you have a "liquify" setting on your blender use that. If you like you can strain the soup through a mesh strainer. Once pureed. return the soup to the pot and bring up to the boil. Stir in the cream/half and half and the lemon juice. Re season if needed and garnish each bowl with celery leaves and fennel fronds if you like.
- NOTE: For a little more pronounced celery flavor add a pinch or two of celery seed or salt when re seasoning.