I have always been interested in cooking, but it wasn't until I was in college and living on my own that I learned how to actually cook. Making soups was one of the first things that I learned and it's still one of my favorites. Soup is amazingly delicious, healthy, easy to make, and hard to mess up. Can you think of a more perfect food?
You can eat it for lunch, dinner, and heck, even breakfast if you want. It can also be eaten cold or hot and adapted based on what's available and in season. Clearly my love for soup runs deep.
This summer I think I might have broken the record for hot soups. This time of year I'm usually enjoying some Raw Zippy Summer Gazpacho (my favorite summer soup!) or chilled Cream of Asparagus and Broccoli Soup. However, our wacky weather has dictated something a bit warmer than normal.
I am currently in love with this carrot soup and have made three separate batches. It's perfect for a light lunch combined with a muffin or paired with cornbread and a hearty salad for dinner. I like this soup best with fresh orange carrots because there's something in my brain that tells me that carrot soup should be orange. When I tried rainbow carrots in a batch, it turned more of a puple-y color and my mind kept trying to convince me it didn't taste the same, even though it did.
I'm also a bit of a soup weirdo (that's totally a term) and always have to include beans in my soup. I love the extra bit of protein and heartiness that beans add to soups, especially when you're trying to make a meal out of 'em. But, if the beans aren't your thing feel free to leave them out.
Creamy Carrot Soup with Fresh Basil
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, diced
5 cups of carrots, chopped
1 cups of garbanzo beans, cooked
5 cups of vegetable broth
1/4 cup basil, chopped
Freshly-ground sea salt and black pepper to taste
Add olive oil to a pot over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the carrots and sauté for another 5 minutes. Add the garbanzo beans, cover with the vegetable broth, bring to a slight boil, and cook until carrots are soft, about 15 minutes.
Next, blend the soup (adding more broth or water as necessary) by using an immersion blender or transfering it to a regular blender. (If using a regular blender, be very careful as the steam can sometimes cause the lid to blow off. I recommend allowing the soup to cool for a few minutes, then blending small batches on medium speed while holding the lid down with a large pot holder or towel in my hand).
Stir in the basil. Add salt and pepper as desired. If a thinner consistency is desired, add more broth or water. Garnish with more basil, edible flowers, or herbs of your choice.