One Saturday back in February I decided to go on a day trip, so after a bit of research I settled on Mount Usher Gardens in Wicklow as the destination. I'd never been before so I thought it would be nice to spend a few hours walking around some lovely gardens, in the freezing cold! I was very excited, then when we got there and walked up to the gates we were met with a big sign that informed us the gardens were closed until March! Typical! Anyway the one consolation was that the Avoca cafe there was open and serving food! So we went in and I got the most delicious soup of Sweet Potato and Carrot. Followed by a chocolate tart! It was definitely worth the drive and made up for the lack of garden walking. I was delighted later that day when I looked up the Avoca cookbook that my friend Emma bought me last year and discovered the recipe was in it.
So over the weekend I made it and I think it tasted just as good as in the cafe! It's the fanciest soup I've ever made. It takes a bit of preparation with all the potatoes you've to peel, but overall it's straightforward enough and I'll definitely be making this again!
- 3 large sweet potatoes (peeled & chopped)
- 2 large onions (peeled & chopped)
- 50g butter
- 2 potatoes (peeled & chopped)
- 3 large carrots (peeled & chopped)
- 1 red chill (de-seeded & chopped)
- 1 x 420g tin coconut milk
- 600ml vegetable stock (*I ended up adding extra stock because I used extra-large enormous sweet potatoes and thought I'd need more liquid to even it out*)
- handful fresh coriander leaves (optional)
- lemongrass stalk (optional)
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- In a heavy saucepan on a low heat, gently cook the onions in butter for 8-10 minutes until they start to soften and turn opaque
- Keep the lid on but check and stir occasionally
- Add the remaining vegetables, the stock and the chopped chilli
- Season well, cover and simmer gently until all the vegetables are tender, about 15-20 minutes
- Remove from the heat, add the coconut milk and fresh coriander if using, and liquidise until smooth
- Taste and adjust the seasoning
- Re-heat gently
- The addition of a bruised lemongrass stalk gives the soup a lovely fragrance. Remember to remove before liquidising.
You may have noticed my Monday Meals have had a bit of a soup theme of late, but don't worry I'm moving onto pastures new in the coming Mondays. The main reason being my electric hand blender has gone bust - from overuse probably. I think it may have given me a slight electric shock the other day, so I think it's for the best that I let it rest for a while.