Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cream of Celeriac Soup with Crisp Pancetta

This soup should be on your Thanksgiving menu. If you've got any vegetarians in attendance, simply omit the pancetta (as long as the vegetarians are lacto-ovo).
With the exception of 'Mehlsuppe' (a specialty of Basel, Switzerland-- it is a porridge-like substance made of brown flour and water...tastes even worse than it sounds), I've never met a soup I didn't like, but this one is an all-time favourite. And it is just so simple to make.
Luxurious, creamy and satisfying, even people not fond of celery seem to take a shine to this soup.

2 celeraic (celery root), timmed of all tough outer bits and chopped into large chunks
4-6 shallots, peeled, trimmed and cut in half
Enough chicken or vegetable broth to cover celeriac and shallots by 2 inches
White pepper
Sea salt
4 ounces (120 grams) single cream (heavy cream in the States)
18 slices of pancetta (roughly 100 grams), cooked until crisp, broken into shards and set aside (optional)

1) Place the chunks of celeriac and shallots into a large soup pot. Pour in enough stock to cover by two inches. Cover and bring to a simmer, cook until the celeriac is very tender; once simmering, about 30 minutes.

2) Puree the soup with a stick blender, or transfer to a blender and puree until smooth. Taste, adjust seasoning with sea salt and white pepper add in cream then taste and adjust seasoning again. From this point on the soup should not be brought to a boil-- simmer only. Laddle soup into bowl, topping with pancetta.

Serves 8, but can easily be doubled-- even quadrupled. Like most soups, this is best made a day or two ahead of time and rehated gently when ready to serve.

1 comment:

Linda Foxworth said...

Sounds delicious. I'm trying it tonight.