We had an abundance of sweet potatoes in the pantry. They are definitely one food item I need to figure out how to utilize efficiently. Too often, I end up tossing a moldy bag into the compost bin. I know I could easily roast them or dice them up and add them to a risotto. Lots of people just bake them the same way as a russet potato. I had, at one time, been working to find a good oven-baked sweet potato fries recipe but I have yet to perfect that recipe. Too often, sweet potato recipes often include ingredients like maple syrup or tiny marshmallows which are two things we don't care for much. Thus began my search for an acceptable way to use up the latest batch of sweet potatoes from our CSA box.
Since we had so many sweet potatoes, I decided to explore a soup figuring that I could put it into smaller containers and stick them in the freezer awaiting a nice, easy weeknight dinner. After searching for a bit, I finally settled on this soup from Vegetarian Times. Their title doesn't contain carrots but we thought the flavor of the carrots was present enough that they deserved being on the bill. Their version was also a bisque that contained heavy cream. I read that heavy cream doesn't freeze well (it's possible but it just takes more work than I wanted to put in). So I did an adaptation of the recipe (leaving out the heavy cream) knowing that the soup was destined for the freezer. I made a note on the containers about possibly adding cream after reheating but when we pulled out the first batch out of the freezer a few weeks later I opted not to add the cream and the soup was quite tasty without it.
Sweet Potato and Carrot Soup with Shiitake Mushrooms
- Sweet potatoes - 1 lb. peeled and cut into small chunks
- Carrots - 3 medium sized, peeled and diced
- Shiitake mushrooms - 5 oz. cleaned and diced
- Garlic - 2-3 cloves minced
- Yellow onion - 1 large, peeled and chopped
- Unsalted butter - 6 tbsp.
- Tomato puree - 1 cup
- White wine - 3/4 cup
- Vegetable stock - 4 cups
- Scallions - 6 trimmed and finely minced
- White pepper - 1/4 tsp.
- Cayenne pepper - 1/4 tsp.
- Salt and black pepper - to taste
- Prep the potatoes, carrots, onions, and garlic
- Heat 4 tbsp. butter in a large saucepan over medium heat
- Add onions and carrots and slowly stir until onions are translucent
- Add minced garlic and let it cook until it releases its fragrance
- Add broth, wine, sweet potatoes, seasonings, and tomato puree and slowly bring to a boil
- Reduce heat, cover, and cook on low for 30 minutes or until the potatoes are soft
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Let cool slightly and use an immersion blender to puree the soup
At this point, I took it off the heat and let it cool until I could ladle it into freezer containers. Now, come the day you take it out of the freezer and once you have it defrosted and are beginning to reheat it, you could elect to add 1/4 cup of heavy cream to make it into a bisque. But I decided to forego the extra calories. However, the garnish is worth making as it adds a nice earthy flavor contrast to the sweetness of the potato and carrot.
- Heat 2 tbsp. butter in a skillet over medium heat
- Add diced Shiitake mushrooms and stir to cook until they begin to soften
- Add chopped scallions and cook until everything is tender
- Remove from heat and spoon onto the center of the soup just before serving.