During winter at Global Youth Village international summer program, our campus is quiet and we are very busy planning for another great summer experience. A fun winter activity is making a hearty soup and we have a simple recipe we want to share. In keeping in line with GYV tradition, the winter rhapsody soup is vegetarian!
No one expects beet soup to possess a touch of magic. But this kettle boasts of sorcery with its rich, compelling flavors and impressive appearance. While most beet soups are a dull shade of burgundy, this one is almost alive with its brilliant magenta color. Prepare the soup a day ahead, and the flavors will blossom.
For a dazzling presentation, bring the soup to the table in a tureen along with some dill weed for extra garnish, and serve it in white or ivory-colored bowls.
WINTER RHAPSODY SOUP
Yield: 8 servings
- 2 pounds (1 kilo) or 3 to 4 medium beets, peeled and cut into eighths
- 4 cups (1 liter) water 1 1/2 pounds (680g) or 3 large Russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into large chunks* 3 1/2 cups (840 ml) water 1/4 teaspoon salt 2 large onions, cut into eighths 1 pound (450g) carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks 1/2 cup (120 ml) water 1/4 cup (60 ml) plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1/3 cup (80 ml) minced fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill weed 1 1/4 teaspoons salt 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
- Place the beets in a 4-quart (4 liter) saucepan with the 4 cups (1 liter) water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn the heat down to medium and simmer about 20 to 25 minutes or until the beets are fork tender.
- Combine the potatoes, water, and salt in a 3-quart (3 liter) saucepan, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn the heat down to medium, and cook about 6 to 10 minutes, or until they are fork tender.
- Put the onions and carrots into a food processor and pulse-chop until they are finely diced. Transfer them to a large skillet or wok and add the 1/2 cup (120 ml) water. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, for about 5 to 6 minutes, or until they are just tender, adding small amounts of water, if needed. Set aside.
- Have a large stockpot ready. In batches, transfer the cooked beets and all their cooking liquid to the blender and puree until smooth. Return the pureed beets to the stockpot.
- Puree the potatoes and their cooking liquid in the blender and add them to the stockpot.
- Reserve 3/4 cup (180 ml) of the cooked carrot and onion mixture for garnish. Puree the remaining cooked carrots and onions, adding a small amount of water, if needed, and add it to the stockpot.
- Add the lemon juice, dill, salt, and pepper to the stockpot and simmer about 5 to 10 minutes to blend the flavors. Garnish each bowl with a spoonful of the reserved carrot and onion mixture and sprinkle with a smattering of chopped parsley.
*We specify Russet potatoes because they have an ideal toothy texture that gives this soup its special body.
NOTE: If the soup is too thick, thin it to your desired consistency with water and adjust the salt and lemon juice measurements.