Parsnip, chest­nut and honey soup, with cumin and sweet-pep­per pis­tou

The Daily Telegraph - Telegraph Magazine - - The Cut // Food -

Serves 8

For the pis­tou

— 1 sweet red pep­per,

de­seeded and chopped

— 1 gar­lic clove, chopped

— 1 tsp cumin seeds

— 4 tbsp ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil

or rape­seed oil

— 2 tbsp flat-leaf pars­ley,

finely chopped

For the soup

— 115g but­ter

— 2 medium onions, roughly chopped

— 2 gar­lic cloves, roughly chopped

— 400g parsnips, pared and chopped into 1cm dice — 100g cooked chest­nuts, peeled

— 2 ap­ples, cored and chopped into 1cm dice — 1.6 litres vegetable stock — 160ml crème fraîche First make the pis­tou. Put the chopped pep­per, gar­lic and cumin seeds in a pan with two ta­ble­spoons of the oil.

Place over a low-medium heat and fry for about 10 min­utes un­til the in­gre­di­ents are soft but not coloured. Re­move from the heat and put in a blender with a pinch of salt and the re­main­ing oil, and whizz un­til smooth. Use a spat­ula to scrape the pis­tou into a bowl, stir in the pars­ley and set to one side.

To make the soup, melt the but­ter in a large pan, then fry the onions and gar­lic over a low-medium heat un­til soft.

Add the parsnips, chest­nuts and ap­ple, and stir-fry for a minute. Pour in the stock, bring to the boil, then sim­mer for 12-15 min­utes un­til all the vegeta­bles are very soft.

Blend in the crème fraîche, then liq­uidise the soup un­til it is very smooth. Sea­son with salt and pep­per, to taste.

Serve the soup pip­ing hot, with a lit­tle of the pis­tou swirled on the sur­face.

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