The soup should have sweet apple flavor at first and then melt into a savory finish. This soup can be served hot or cold, though I prefer it cold. It may be served simply as a side dish with apple pieces and cocoa nibs sprinkled on top, or as an entrée, which is explained in the recipe.
Apple Parsnip Soup
For white mirepoix:
celery, 2 ribs. medium dice
onion, medium dice
2 shallots, medium dice
1/2 bulb fennel. medium dice (top reserved)
1 parsnip, peeled, medium dice
Over medium heat sweat all white mirepoix ingredients in 2 tbl of butter (if vegan, use oil) until soft, transparent and aromatic, about 10 minutes.
For soup base:
4 apples (preferably from a local orchard), peeled, cored, medium dice
1lb parsnips (minus 1 used in mirepoix), peeled, medium dice
1 can coconut milk
Add apples and parsnips to sweated white mirepoix and stir, and allow sweat for 2 minutes. Add 2 quarts of water to pot, and simmer on medium until apples and parsnips are tender, about 45-60 minutes. Purée mixture with an immersion blender or in batches in a regular blender for 5 minutes.
This is key to get a smooth, pulp free soup. If you’re blender isn’t the greatest, strain through a fine mesh strainer after blending.
Stir 1 can of coconut milk into soup base, add salt to taste.
If serving as an entrée, use the following garnishes and instructions to present the soup as the meal's focal point.
misc. local apples, large dice
chestnuts, break into pieces
pine cone–smoked olive oil
Arrange assortment of apples in bowl, add 4-6 wasabi peas, sprinkle in cocoa nibs, add 2 chestnuts broken into pieces. Top apples with a few pieces of fennel frond. When soup is ready to be served, place bowls before guests and pour soup base over ingredients.
I want this article to be a discussion and invite interaction, so please email me at email@example.com to let me know where you’d like to see this column go, requests for recipes catering to particular dietary needs and so on.