This is my version of a soup from Modernist Cuisine by Nathan Myhrvold. It has an incredibly rich creamy texture, without the cream, and a caramel-like sweetness without any sugar. I love ginger. I make that one of the strongest flavors in the soup but how much ginger to use is the cook’s choice. The soup is great as a lunch entrée served with salad and toasted pumpernickel bread, as an afternoon pick-me-up or in small portions as the first course of a more elaborate dinner. It has the added advantage of also working well in a vegan meal.
1 ½ lb (about 6 cups) carrots or carrot and parsnip combination, cut into chunks
1 large onion, coarse dice
1 – 4 tbl minced ginger or fresh ginger juice
2 tbl coconut oil (for vegan soup) OR 2 tbl unsalted butter
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt + salt to taste
¼ cup water
white pepper or Japanese yuzu pepper paste to taste
lemon juice as needed to balance the sweetness
1 quart vegetable stock OR 1 quart chicken stock, used to thin the purée after blending (Commercial brands like Swanson’s or College Inn are fine here)
Toasted coconut flakes, toasted hazelnuts, drizzle of pumpkinseed oil, or smoked paprika or any combination of these ingredients
Melt coconut oil or butter in the pressure cooker and add the root vegetables, the fresh ginger and onion. Add the water, salt, and baking soda.
Bring pressure cooker to high pressure and cook for 20 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally so the vegetables don’t stick to the bottom and scorch. Quick release the pressure by running the lid under cold water in the sink.
Purée the soup in a blender until completely smooth, then thin to the desired texture with vegetable or chicken stock. Balance the sweetness of the soup with lemon juice, adjust for salt, and finish with any of the suggested garnishes.