Cream of Carrot and Lemon Soup
My Favorite Soup
- Servings: 4 to 6.
I've made this easy recipe for many years and have lost track where I first found it. I serve this soup as a first course for Thanksgiving dinner because it's got an appetite-sparking flavor and a seasonal orange color. Its creamy texture comes from adding a baking potato and non-fat yogurt. If you want to turn it into a more satisfying soup that could be a main course, you can pre-cook some rice or little tubetti pasta and add it to the hot soup.
This soup can be made a day in advance (up to the last step) and re-heated. And while it's simple to make, your guests will think it is elegant.
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (or 4 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter -- the butter adds a rich taste)
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped, about 1/2 cup
- 1 large garlic clove, peeled and sliced thin
- 2 pounds carrots, peeled and sliced into 1-inch pieces
- 3 medium-sized fresh tomatoes cored and chopped; it's okay to leave the skin on
- 1 baking potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch slices
- 1/2 cup no fat or low fat plain yogurt
- 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 cup shredded fresh parsley
- 4 cups chicken stock (use homemade or good store-bought boxed stock, not the bouillon-cube stuff)
- For garnish: fresh carrot curls, sprigs of parsley and low-fat plain yogurt or sour cream
- In a large saucepan melt 4 tablespoons of the butter. Add the onion and garlic, cover and cook over low heat until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes.
- Add the carrots, tomatoes, potato, stock, salt, pepper and remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to moderately low and simmer, covered, for 45 minutes.
- When all the vegetables are very soft, strain the soup, reserving the broth and the vegetables separately. Purée the vegetables in a food processor until smooth. Depending how much soup you're making and the size of your processor, you may need to do this in two or three batches.
- Return the purée and the broth together to the pan. Add the yogurt and hot sauce and stir to combine. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Taste the soup at this point and correct the seasoning, especially for salt and hot sauce.
- Before serving, reheat the soup and stir in the lemon juice. Ladle into individual serving bowls and garnish each with a carrot curl and sprig of parsley. If you like, you can pass a bowl of yogurt or sour cream for each diner to add a spoonful.
Buy the best tomatoes you can find in season, preferably not plum because plum are fleshier and less bright in flavor and in this recipe the acid of the tomatoes is needed to help balance the sweetness of the carrots. If it's in the middle of winter and the fresh tomatoes are awful, you could use 3 large canned tomatoes.