Apple-Parsnip Soup

When I was invited to a neighborhood potluck that asked us to use local foods I came up with this soup. Surprisingly it was a big hit– so much so that Mary McClintock, food columnist for The Greenfield Reporter, contacted me for the recipe! But since I never use recipes I had to create this from scratch and memory. Roasted vegetables and caramelized onions are the secret to the taste. Both techniques bring out the sweet, complex flavors of the vegetables, especially the parsnips. Enjoy!

2 T. oil (olive is good)

6 medium sized parsnips

1/4 tsp. salt

2-3 medium onions, sliced thin

1 large apple, peeled, cored, and cut in chunks

2 vegetable bouillon cubes dissolved in 3 C. hot water

2 stalks celery, sliced thin

cayenne to taste (optional)

1 C. almond (or any) milk

Cut parsnips crosswise, then in halves and quarters; toss in 1 T. of oil, sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. of salt, place on cookie sheet, roast in 375 oven for 25 minutes or until tender. While parsnips roast, heat remaining 1 T. oil in soup pot over medium heat; add sliced onions and chunked apple. Cover and cook about 15-20 minutes, but check and stir frequently as apples and onions soften and brown. Add celery, roasted parsnips, and 3 C. of bouillon to caramelized onions and apple. Simmer about 10 minutes. Put soup in blender in batches; slowly add 1 C. milk until you reach desired consistency; you may have to add more liquid. Add cayenne to taste. Return blended soup to pot; heat and serve.

A dollop of thick yogurt is a nice garnish.

Please give me feedback if you make this soup–or if you have any questions. Thank you!

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