Here’s an easy hearty soup for January, certain to please the pickiest of eaters. Containing only vegetable stock, carrot, onion, ginger, miso, and garlic there isn’t a diet I can think of this won’t fit into. Vegan, gluten free, paleo (if you use miso), and still delicious and filling. (The one thing for our gluten free csa lovers to look out for is gluten free miso. I use mellow white miso, which is made from rice. Check the label and make sure the miso you buy is completely gluten free before purchasing.) If you love Asian style cooking you probably have all of the ingredients on hand to make this soup. I found this recipe on the Smitten Kitchen website, and it is perfect as is, although I have some ideas for topping it.
In the summer months you might get scallions in your CSA share, but in the winter I think it’s worth picking them up. If you want to really amp this soup up, top off your bowl with a scoop of rice, steamed greens, and a shake of tamari. It makes it feel more like a meal and adds great texture. The other great thing about this simple carrot soup is that it’s so easy to make, and weeknight friendly! Since the soup is ultimately puréed, everything can be roughly chopped which is a win in my book.
Simmer everything then purée with an immersion blender or in a blender. If you don’t have an immersion blender, it’s a great inexpensive addition to your kitchen. Perfect for winter soups, sauces, dressings, etc. Purée the soup and add the miso. Taste and add more miso if necessary. Thin with a little stock or water if necessary. Miso is very rich and salty, so you won’t add a lot of seasoning to the soup while it’s cooking (which is the opposite of how we would normally make a soup)
Carrot Miso Soup adapted from Smitten Kitchen
2 lbs carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 onion, peeled and diced
4 – 6 cloves garlic, peeled and roghly chopped
1 – 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
4 cups vegetable stock (plus a little more for thinning the soup if necessary)
1/4 miso (or more to taste)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Optional For Garnish:
toasted sesame seeds
thinly sliced scallions
Heat oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté onion, garlic, and ginger until onion is translucent, 8 – 10 minutes. Add carrots, stir to combine, and then pour in stock. Bring to boil, then simmer, covered until carrots are very tender, about 30 minutes.
Remove the soup from the stove, then purée in a blender or with an immersion blender. Place the miso in a small bowl, and add a ladle of soup. Whisk to combine, then add to the pot of soup. Taste the soup and season with salt, pepper or additional miso to taste.
Garnish each with toasted sesame seeds and scallions.