This hearty and homey soup is super rich and creamy, even though it’s completely dairy free. Even better, it’s quick enough to make on a weeknight! The pistou adds a little spicy brightness. Serves 4 to 6
- 3 T. olive oil or Earth Balance
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 4 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 fennel bulb, diced
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- salt and pepper to taste.
- 6-8 C. vegetable stock, I like Better Than Bullion Vegetable Base
- 1 C. parsley, minced very finely
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- zest of one lemon
- 1/4 t. red pepper flakes
- 1/4 C. lemon infused olive oil (or regular)
Heat the 3 T. of olive oil or Earth Balance in a soup pot or enameled cast iron. Add the diced onion, potatoes, fennel, and celery. Stir to combine, season with salt and pepper, and cover. Sweat the vegetables on medium-high heat for about ten minutes.
Stir the vegetables, hopefully you have a little fond (brown sticky bits) developing on the bottom. Add a little stock and scrape the brown bits off, this gives the soup a lot of flavor. If there’s no fond in your pot, increase the heat to high for a couple of minutes until the veggies start to brown a little bit, then reduce the heat back to medium-high.
Stir in about 6 C. of the broth. If the veggies aren’t covered with broth, add a little more until they are submerged. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low and allow to simmer until the veggies are very tender, about thirty minutes. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup to a smooth, silky texture. If it’s too thick you can add a bit more broth. Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
While the soup is simmering, make the pistou. Combine the minced parsley, garlic, lemon zest, and red pepper flakes. Pour the lemon infused olive oil over the mixture and stir to combine.
To serve the soup, ladle it into a bowl and drop a dollop of pistou into the center gently so it floats on top. Drizzle with a little extra oil if desired.