One of our first meals out in LA was at Michelangelo's, a low-key pasta/pizza joint in Silverlake, run by a family of Italian-by-way-of-Venezuela brothers. On that night over three years ago, and on many nights since, our waiter has extolled the virtues of "zee carrot zoup...eet ees very good tonight."
Despite the accolades, I've never tasted their zoup, yet when looking in my fridge last Thursday, stumped as to what to make for dinner with the last of my local produce, the waiter's voice popped into my head and some gingery, curried carrot zoup was born. Interestingly, the antioxident levels increase in carrots when you cook them, so this soup also works for Sweetnicks ARF/5-a-Day Tuesdays.
The yogurt swirl is from Straus Family Creamery. Still stumped on truly local yogurt.
Zee Carrot Zoup
Start by roughly chopping a small onion, one stalk of celery, 1 1/2 lbs. carrots, and an inch square piece of fresh ginger. Toss the onion, celery and ginger in a soup pot with 1/4 c. water and a bit of butter, and cook until veggies are softened. Sprinkle with a hefty dose of curry powder, salt and pepper, then add the carrots and 4 c. of water (you could use veggie or chicken stock instead, but I was determined to stay local). Bring to a boil, then turn down to a simmer and cook 15-20 minutes until carrots are soft. Carefully and slowly whirl the soup in your blender until smooth and amazingly orange. Serve with a swirl of plain yogurt--this really helps cut the spiciness.
One sad note: I made a ton of soup and had some leftovers for lunch the next day. I found that the ginger flavor had multiplied exponentially and practically burned my throat. Not good. Maybe it needed to be cooked down a bit more?
Erin's Kitchen Index: Soups, salads and veggies