18 November, 2012

Sweet Potato Bisque

I'm feeling a little under the weather.

Of course I still made dinner!  
The Boyfriend offered to pick up something, but oh no, you can't keep me out of the kitchen!

What's a better solution for the sniffles than a nice hot bowl of homemade soup and some crusty bread anyway?!
This soup was a culmination of ingredients on hand. 
It's a creamy medley of sweet potato and carrot, with some added rich sweetness from the caramelized onions. 

Ever the critic (which I greatly appreciate, do not get me wrong), 
The Boyfriend says to me..'It's good, but I don't taste any butternut squash..'

To which I replied 'That's cause it's Sweet Potato!!  =)
In his defense, I have been in a bit of a butternut squash rage lately.  
In fact, I garnished this soup with toasted butternut squash seeds for a nice salty crunch. 

Sweet Potato Bisque
Makes about 2 entree portions, 4 appetizer portions

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into 1" cubes
2 onions, diced
2 whole carrots, peeled and diced
3/4 tsp hot harissa*
1/4 tsp ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
32 ounces chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream

*Harissa is a Tunisian spice blend often sold as a paste found in the International Aisle.
You can substitute cayenne pepper or chili pepper for similar effect

1. Carmelize the onions.  In a large stockpot, heat a few drizzles of olive oil over medium heat.  Add the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally (every 15 min) for about 1 hour.  Onions will begin to brown and stick to bottom of pan- this is a good thing.  Scrape onion from bottom and keep cooking for about 30 more minutes, stirring more frequently, until onions are a deep brown and very soft.

2. Remove onions from pan and set aside.  In same pan, heat a few more drizzled of olive oil over medium heat.  Add the sweet potato.  Saute for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the carrots.  Saute for another 15 minutes.  Add the harissa, ginger, and garlic. Saute another 5 minutes.  Add the chicken stock and increase heat to high.  Once the soup reaches a boil, reduce heat to medium low and let simmer for an hour, stirring it occasionally.  

3.  Pour the soup in batches into a blender or food processor.  Puree until soup is nice and smooth. Watch out for splashing- it's hot!  Add the soup back to the stockpot over medium high heat.  Add the heavy cream and mix in.  Cook another 5 minutes. Serve with salad and crusty bread.  

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