You may remember from my recipe for Bone Broth that I keep the ends-n-nubs of veggies such as carrots, onions, celery, fennel, tomatoes and tiny garlic cloves (that are too small to peel) in a bag in the freezer until it is time to make some broth. For this week’s cooking, I wasn’t interested in a bone broth, which really benefits from a long, slow, 8-12 hour low cooking session to extract the most flavor and mineral-content. Instead, I just wanted a vegetable broth, so I threw in my bag of frozen ends-n-nubs + 1 Tablespoon of tomato paste + several bay leaves and 1 teaspoon, each, of dried basil, oregano & thyme; covered them in Britta-filtered water and set the slow cooker on High for 4 hours while I went and picked berries.
When I got home from picking fruit, I created the soup, using the leftover roasted sweet potatoes from our week at the lake. I had roasted 6 large sweet potatoes in their jackets, with the skins pierced. We only ate two of them, so I scooped out the flesh of the other 4, and put it into a container and froze it. A great way not to waste food, and use later to create a soup:
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil (or other favorite oil)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 6 celery heart stalks, chopped (if you don’t have celery hearts, sub 3 outer celery stalks)
- 3 large carrots, chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Heat oil over medium heat in a large stock pot and add onion, celery, carrots and salt. Allow to “sweat” — cook slowly, stirring frequently, until they become translucent, about 5-10 minutes. The salt will help draw-out the water in the veggies, so that the veggies will simmer in their own juices.
- 3 or 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2″ piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated (optional). Note — I could not taste the ginger once I finished and pureed this soup, so in the future I would double or triple the amount of ginger, to make this Gingered Sweet Potato Soup. I added this ginger because I had it on-hand and needed to use it up.
Add to the above and cook for another 2 minutes. Continue stirring frequently so that the garlic and ginger do not scorch.
- Flesh of 4 large roasted sweet potatoes, roasted in their jackets with the skin pierced, and flesh scooped out, once cool
- 8 cups vegetable broth from above (or bone broth or store-bought vegetable/beef/chicken broth)
- 1 teaspoon salt
Add to above and stir to combine. Bring to a boil for 1 minute, then down to a low simmer for 15 minutes.
Puree soup using stick immersion blender or standing blender. Adjust seasonings with additional salt & freshly ground black pepper.
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (from approximately 2 small lemons)
Added, to balance the sweetness of the roasted sweet potatoes. Could substitute lime juice or apple cider vinegar.