This recipe was an accident—a happy accident. A big bag of carrots in my refrigerator was about to go bad, so I roasted them, threw them into my blender, added a few other delicious, flavorful ingredients, and voilà: Spicy Carrot Soup. It was that easy. And it’s dairy and gluten free!
This soup is an excellent party dish because it’s show-stoppingly beautiful, it comes together in a flash, and it can be made ahead. Serve it hot or cold. I used rainbow carrots, but if you use all orange carrots the soup will be an even brighter, more vibrant orange.
P.S. Not all my experiments end like this. Ask me about the butternut squash lasagna with cashew cream I made last fall. Yuck. That’s one I’ll spare ya.
Food La La Recipe: Spicy Carrot Soup
- 1 2-pound bag carrots (I used rainbow carrots but any carrots work. Reserve one carrot of each color for garnish)
- 2 TBS olive oil
- 2 TBS butter
- 1 onion, sliced thinly
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2” ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 can full fat coconut milk
- 1 cup chicken stock (highest quality available)
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon chili flakes
- To garnish: lime, feta cheese, pumpkin seeds
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Trim ends off carrots, discard, then toss carrots with olive oil and kosher salt. Arrange on a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast until tender (30-35 minutes—you should be able to easily prick them with a fork).
- While the carrots are roasting, make carrot curl garnish. With a vegetable peeler, peel long ribbons to the center of the carrot. If you do not rotate the carrot, you’ll get nice thick ribbons. Then coil the carrot ribbons around your finger and place in a bowl of ice water. (WHY #1?)
- Warm butter in a heavy bottomed pot, then add onions, garlic and ginger. Sautee until soft.
- Empty can of coconut milk into blender and blend for 10 seconds.
- Add blended coconut milk, chicken stock, water, and roasted carrots to pot of onions and bring to boil. Remove from heat and let cool. (WHY#2?)
- Transfer cooled liquid to a blender, add chili flakes, and blend until smooth.
- Return soup to pot to reheat and season with kosher salt.
- Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with pumpkin seeds, sprinkle of feta, squeeze of lime juice, and top with coiled carrots.
Psst! A few recipe notes:
WHY? #1: The ice water will help preserve the shape of the carrot coil, like “freezing” it into place. Make these before making the soup or while the carrots are roasting so that when it’s time to garnish your piping hot soup, the carrot coils will be ready and waiting for you in the refrigerator. The crisp, cold carrot coils are a wonderful contrast to the creamy, hot soup.
WHY? #2: Hot liquids or food create steam, which builds dangerous pressure within a blender. To avoid food exploding all over your walls, let it cool a bit before blending. If you don’t have time and you need to blend while the food is still hot, crack the lid to vent the steam and keep your hand on the lid.
Note: I used organic carrots so I didn’t bother to peel them. But if you prefer peeling your carrots, it won’t affect the recipe.
Note: This recipe is markedly better with homemade chicken stock, or high quality stock (Better Than Bouillon is pretty good and widely available).
Note: If the soup is too thick, add 1 cup filtered water.