Carrot Soup with Salted Creme Fraiche & Parmesan Croutons
Velvety CARROT SOUP with Parmesan Croutons
I am so happy to see the weekend arrive…just about as happy as I am to share this amazing, healing, warming, velvety, rich carrot soup with you!
This has been a very LONG week for me and the fam and this carrot soup is the warm, fuzzy hug at the end of it.
At the start of the week I began to get that dreaded tingle in my throat. Like Houdini escaping from…well..everything, I’ve been escaping all forms of sickness for close to 3 years now. If I really think about it, I hadn’t been sick since before I was pregnant and Jack is almost two now so…wow…I guess my time had finally come.
Being sick with kids is the PITS man!!
Let me tell you, getting sick without kids is a pain, but getting sick with a toddler running around the house all day like a tornado is another story. Since he’s a mama’s boy, he likes to have me in sight at all times…Who can blame him though, I am pretty awesome 🙂
Luckily, I have my super-human husband Dave and his amazing sidekick…my sister, Heidi to help out with tornado boy…allowing me the luxury of bed rest. So all day Monday I was in bed with a throat that felt like I just stepped downstage after a fire breathing act, a pounding headache, and a huge grump face. Where was my carrot soup now dang it?!
BRING ON THE COLD MEDS!!!
I am usually all about holistic approaches to healing the body, but I also appreciate a couple large gulps of nyquil followed by the always entertaining nyquil dream!
I took it all people!! Dayquil, Nyquil, cold ease, vitamin c, smoothies with oranges, smoothies with mangoes, smoothies with carrot juice, smoothies with whiskey..ok not smoothies with whiskey, but a couple more days of a cold and I’ll try ANYTHING!
We made it through Monday, but then woke up Tuesday to congestion face. I’m sure you’ve experienced congestion face…that is when you feel like your head is going to explode like a pressure cooker. Luckily, Tuesday Jack has grandparent time so he’d be off my hands most of the day. I got another day in bed…who’s the lucky lady? ME!
No chores, but still no CARROT SOUP either.
I laid in bed, blowing my nose every two minutes (where does all the snot come from!!) and binge watching Psych. I watched the laundry pile grow up into Mt. Kilimanjaro heights and ignored it. When you’re sick…and a woman, you should get a maid from the government to help you out!!!
Wednesday and Thursday found my husband getting sick and me getting no better. The Kleenex stock went up, the nyquil bottles went down, and we continued to struggle through toddler time. Kids DO NOT care if you’re sick. Jack thinks it’s hilarious when I blow my nose. Since it sounds like a foghorn when it’s really stuffy, I can appreciate his humor.
FAMILIES are a BLESSING.
First of all, Dave and I are so blessed to have family close by!! Not only did Dave’s parents watch Jack during a couple of our sick days, his Mom also sent us home turkey chili, and homemade chicken soup with fresh bread. There is nothing more welcome when you are sick than soup…hot bread ain’t so bad either!
MY MOMMA Mary.
Although most people will say their Mom is the best, mine really is. My Mom, Mary will text me everyday I am sick to see how I am (I know I’m spoiled). Just knowing that someone out there is thinking about me as soon as they wake up makes me warm and fuzzy inside. My sweet, sweet Mama! She picked Jack up Wednesday and brought him home right at bedtime, fully bathed, smelling sweet, and ready for me to just dump him in the bed and hit the nyquil for round 3. Thank you to all the Moms out there that take such good care of their babies!! People…call your mamas up and tell them THANK YOU for all their hard work!! It truly is a thankless job. Believe me, your Mom will love you for it!!
let’s get some CARROT SOUP going!
I am sitting in front of my computer Saturday morning, feeling much, much better, and thought I would share one of my favorite soup recipes. It is so simple, and so delicious!
THE HUMBLE CARROT.
The humble carrot is one of my favorite kitchen staples, and I always have them in the fridge. Carrots are a great source of vitamin A (beta carotene) which plays a critical role in maintaining healthy vision and neurological functions. Carrots are great juiced and added to smoothie mixes, or diced up in the holy trinity with onions and celery as a base for sauces and soups. You can shred them for carrot cake, slice them paper thin for salads, or just munch on one like bugs bunny for a healthy snack!
This CARROT soup NEEDS TOPPINGS gosh darn it!!
When it comes to soup, the toppings are just as important to me. Sure the soup should shine, but the toppings can add additional layers of flavor and texture. Since carrots and dill go well together, and creme fraiche goes well with everything in my book, I decided to top this soup with a lightly salted creme fraiche and some crispy pan fried Parmesan croutons.
While you may not be familiar with creme fraiche, please don’t be scared off!! Creme Fraiche is simply the sophisticated French cousin of sour cream without the added gelatin, rennin, and vegetable enzyme stablizers. Not gonna lie, I love me some sour cream too…but adding a dollop of creme fraiche creates a slightly tangy, slightly sweet richness to soups, salad dressings, and even pasta sauces (excellent added to simple tomato sauces). You will fall in love with it once you start using it. You can bet your britches, my shopping cart always has one tub of the Trader Joe’s brand. Give it a try!!
Add some TEXTURE to that CARROT SOUP folks!!
The crunchy crouton adds a nice contrast in texture to the pureed soup. Sure you get some tang from the creme fraiche and a little bitterness from the dill, but it’s the crunchy, salty crouton that adds the over the top flavor!!!
I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY hope you make this carrot soup!! Since the carrots are only simmered with water at the start, the carrot flavor (and color) really remains true to it’s taste. If you make this carrot soup (you better!!!), you gosh darn better try out these toppings too!! I promise you, your kids, your mamas, your papas, your barn animals…EVERYONE will love it!! This soup can be a filling lunch or even a starter before dinner. PS, the leftovers are amazing too and will keep in a container 2-3 days. You can also freeze this soup once it cools off. In the freezer it will keep for about 6 months. ENJOY..SLURP SLURP!
- 5 cups filtered water
- 5 cups carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/2 coins
- 3 Tbsp Olive Olive, plus a little for drizzling
- 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 Tbsp dill, chopped
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 slice gourmet white bread, cut into small cubes
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated finely
- 1/2 cup creme fraiche
- salt and pepper
- In a large stockpot, bring the water and carrots to a boil. Lower heat immediately and simmer for 15 minutes uncovered until carrot is al dente (a little bite to it, not mushy). Ladle simmered carrots and water into a blender and add 1 Tbsp of olive oil. Blend for one minute on high (MAKE SURE YOU HAVE AN OPENING FOR THE STEAM TO ESCAPE OR YOUR KITCHEN WILL BE DECORATED IN CARROT SOUP). Return blended carrots to stockpot and add 2 Tbsp of butter, 1 Tbsp of sugar, 1 Tbsp of salt, some fresh cracked pepper, and 2 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar. TASTE THE SOUP!! Add salt if needed and adjust your seasonings to taste. Set heat to low to keep soup nice and hot while you make your croutons.
- Warm skillet over medium heat and add 1 Tbsp of butter and 1 Tbsp of Olive Oil. When butter foams add cubed bread and toss to coat. Stir off and on for about 5 minutes. When bread starts to brown add a small drizzle of olive oil to get the bread extra crispy. Continue to stir bread around a minute more. When bread is browned to your liking, add the 1/4 of Parmesan to the pan and stir it around breaking it up. Don't worry if it melts on the skillet, it will get crunchy and delicious. Add your salt and pepper and remove to paper towel lined plate.
- Ladle soup into bowl. Spoon some creme fraiche on top. Take a pinch of salt and sprinkle on the creme fraiche. Scatter a handful of croutons on top, along with a sprinkle of dill. Put on bib and dig in!