Winter is an amazing time to relish in all things cozy. When you’re getting up and getting ready for work in the dark, coming home in the dark and it’s drizzly and cold outside, food can be one of the things that give you the most pleasure. Everyone has a favourite soup, some like them watery with chunks of meat, vegetables and barley floating in a delicious consommé and others prefer the thick, hearty soups made from blended vegetables and pulses that provide a filling, comforting meal.
This soup is of the latter variety, and the great thing about it is that it is tremendously easy to make. With the goodness of Manuka Honey to add a hint of sweetness, this honey roasted parsnip and cauliflower soup makes for a tasty starter, or a hearty whole meal. Combine it with some crusty bread or grilled cheese and a glass of reisling by the fire for a winter warmer recipe that is not only healthy but hearty and wholesome.
Parsnips are a wonderful vegetable – sweeter than a carrot and almost caramelly when roasted, they provide an immense amount of Vitamin C. In fact one serving of parsnip provides you with 1/5 of your recommended daily dose of one of the most popular immunity supporting vitamins. Cauliflower adds a pearly white colour to the soup, and being rich in sulfur, cauliflower may support gut health. This is because sulfur supports the production of glutathione which is important for maintaining the integrity of the gut lining as well as supporting its regeneration. As a potent antioxidant, glutathione works throughout the body protecting cells from inflammatory damage.
An all-round delicious and nutritious meal and we hope you enjoy!
The Steens Team x
- 750grams parsnips (about 6), washed well and chopped into 2cm chunks
- 250grams cauliflower florets (about 8oz)
- 6cloves garlic peeled
- 2tablespoon olive oil (or cooking oil of choice)
- 1tablespoon fresh thyme leaves peeled from the stem (discard stem)
- 1tablespoon honey
- ½batch caramelised onions (see below)
- 5litres vegetable stock (about 6 cups)
- ¼cup heavy cream
- toasted hazelnuts to serve
- extra cream to serve
- 4large brown onions
- 4tablespoon olive oil (enough to coat the bottom of the pan)
- 1tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Manuka Honey
- pinch of salt
Remove the skin from the onions, cut in half and place the onions cut side down on a chopping board. Slice each onion as thinly as you can.
Add enough oil to coat the bottom of a heavy-based saucepan (how much oil is needed is going to depend on the size of your pan). Heat over med-low heat until shimmering.
Once shimmering add the sliced onions and a pinch of salt to the saucepan and mix to ensure they are covered with the oil. Spread the onions over the base of the pan.
Leave the onions to cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Make sure to scrape up any bits sticking to the pan and incorporate them back into the mixture.
At this point, you want to add in the balsamic vinegar and honey. Drizzle it over the onions and then stir to incorporate, making sure to scrape up any bits again. Cook for another 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Once the onions have become soft and a deep golden brown in color then they are ready. Remove from the heat and store in a glass jar with a lid in the fridge until ready to use.
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F
Combine the parsnip chunks, cauliflower florets and garlic in a roasting tin. Drizzle on the olive oil (or cooking oil of choice), fresh thyme, honey, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Pop into the preheated oven and roast for about 15-20 minutes, or until starting to turn golden brown.
Once the veggies are roasted, add to a blender along with the caramelised onions and vegetable stock. Blend until smooth. (You may have to do this is batched depending on the size of your blender). Alternatively, you can add the ingredients to a large saucepan and use a handheld blender, although I have found the consistency is not as smooth with this method.
Add the blended soup to a large saucepan, add the cream and heat until the desired temperature is reached.
Serve sprinkled with some toasted hazelnuts (and pan fried bacon if you’re looking for a bit of extra salt) and topped with a swirl of cream. Add more salt and pepper as needed.