In one of my first posts, I mentioned that fall has a distinct smell. Pinpointing that smell is difficult, but in a word, it’s earthy.
Winter in New England brings a whole new series of smells with it, but there’s just one that I think my fellow north-easterners will all recognize. The smell of snow.
Do you know what I’m talking about?
Every winter, just before it snows, there’s this distinct scent in the air. It’s crisp, clean, refreshing, yet somehow cozy and comforting at the same time. Ok, maybe it isn’t comforting to some, but I happen to enjoy winter. If I could just cut out all the shovelling and ski and skate my way through the months, I’d be thrilled.
Sadly, it’s just not possible.
The other night, while walking the dogs, my husband and I caught the smell of snow for the first time this December. Being the homebodies that we are, we finished up the walk and stumbled into the house to find that the heat finally kicked in and it was toasty!
That was the perfect segue into a warming bowl of comfort food. At first Corey was a little skeptical. I inflict my veggiefied (don’t look that one up!) meals on him constantly and he’s just not a fan of some. Ok. He hates anything made with squash.
I had to convince him that roasting the parsnips, and carrots would add enough oomph to the soup to make the taste of the squash fade into the background.
I’m not sure if that really happened, but the results were fantastic and Corey gobbled them up. I suppose this helped to justify my purchase of the “ghost carrots”….aka…parsnips.
Do you have a least favorite vegetable?
Mine is cooked broccoli. I can’t stand the smell.
Roasted Root Vegetable Soup
- 2 large parsnips
- 2 large carrots
- 1/2 medium-sized butternut squash
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1/2 medium-sized sweet yellow onion
- 1/2 Tbsp butter
- 2 to 2 1/2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 1/4 cup light cream
- salt & pepper
- smoked paprika (I used about 1/2 tsp)
- ground ginger (I used about 1/2 tsp)
- ground cayenne pepper (also used about 1/2 tsp)
pre-heat oven to 475 degrees F and set rack to top third
Peel and wash the parsnips, carrots and squash. Cut into approximately 1 inch chunks. Peel the garlic, toss all ingredients with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread across a greased cookie sheet and roast in the oven for about 20 minutes or until the vegetables can be easily pierced with a fork and start to brown.
While the vegetables are cooking, add the butter to a medium-sized sauce pan and peel the onion. Chop the onion roughly and sauté until translucent. Add the roasted vegetables, turning to coat with the onion mixture.
Before your vegetables start to stick to the bottom of the pot, add the broth and increase the heat until the soup starts to boil. Decrease heat and simmer until all vegetables are tender. This took me about 10 minutes.
Let it cool enough to use an immersion blender or food processor. Add the cream, spices and process until smooth. If you don’t have either, you can use a potato masher or a fork to break up the large pieces. The results will differ, but should still be tasty.
Finish with your choice of toppings. I used sour cream and pomegranate seeds for tang and sweetness.