A visit last week to the Trenton Farmers Market resulted in the purchase of numerous harbingers of the bounty of fall, all Jersey Fresh and bursting with flavor: crunchy red apples straight from area farms, many varieties of squash and, much to the delight of our fierce brown kitchen rabbit Holly, a bunch of carrots plucked from nearby fields by way of an astonishingly huge rosette of deep, green leaves.
Holly chows down on such leaves often but never gets to chomp the edible part – as the taproot is known in botanical circles – because of the high sugar content. This translates quickly to veggie bins clogged with carrots.
This being fall – high season for clumps of carrots and cool weather – soup seamed a reasonable way to resolve that situation.
A number of recipes quickly emerged from the pages of parish cookbooks in a collection that has grown exponentially over the years. After tinkering around in the kitchen, a clear favorite emerged.
It was a delightful brew from “Breaking Bread,” the cookbook members of Holy Cross Parish, Rumson, compiled to celebrate the 125th anniversary of that venerable seashore faith community.
This soup is unbelievably creamy – very much like a bisque – though it contains neither cream nor milk. It’s a little bit spicy. It’s just the ticket from a chilly afternoon. Served with buttered Portuguese rolls, it makes a lovely, light lunch.
Carrot Soup by the Durney Family
-14 large carrots
-1 large onion
-8 cups chicken stock
-1/3 cup uncooked rice
-1/4 tsp thyme -1/4 tsp nutmeg -3 tbsp butter -salt and pepper to taste
Directions: In a large sauce pan, melt butter together with carrots, onions, and ½ tsp of salt. Cover and steam vegetables for 15 minutes. Add chicken stock and bring contents to a boil. Sprinkle in rice and simmer the soup for 35 minutes. Puree it in a blender and return to the pot. Add nutmeg, adjust seasonings if needed. Serve nicely warm but not overly hot. Serves 8.
This soup freezes very well.