Buttery yellow, silky smooth, gently curried, with tart green apple to balance the earthy sweetness of the celery. Heavenly mélange.
If you do a quick web search on Celery Soup Recipe, you’ll find 3 million recipes, most of which contain celery (ofr course), some member of the onion family, stock, and cream. In other words, you’ll find Cream of Celery Soup. One of the world’s most delicious soups, to be sure.
A quick preview of The Vegetarian Flavor Bible (highly recommend!), suggests numerous inspired flavor pairings. Here are a few that sound promising:
- Celery | Celery Root | Parmesan
- Celery | Apple | Walnut
- Celery | Blue Cheese | Fruit
- Celery | Pistachio | Yogurt
- Celery | Cucumber | Mustard
- Celery | Curry | Apple
This past fall, I developed a celery soup that speaks to the first of these: Triple Celery Soup with Parmesan, Parsley, Garlic Croutons & Parsley Oil. It’s a game changing soup–earthy and urbane, simple and sophisticated. It’s the epitome of fall, with layers of flavor that are greater than the sum of their parts.
This pairing is a little tricky. Curry is such a high volume flavor that it easily overpowers more subtle flavors. Cooked celery is one of those milder flavors. It whispers rather than shouts. I knew that the curry must be used sparingly. I want to taste it along with the celery.
So I started with a teaspoon and worked up to a tablespoon, which struck the perfect balance to my palate. Then I added turmeric, mostly for color. Turmeric is tricky too. A smidge too much and you have glow-in-the-dark soup.
And finally, a thoughtful garnish is important for a pureed soup. It lends needed textural contrast, plus an opportunity to amplify or contrast with other flavors in the soup. I chose to accentuate the curry and coconut flavors.
Buttery yellow, silky smooth, gently curried, with tart green apple to balance the earthy sweetness of the celery.
Flavor Pairing: celery | celery leaf | green apple | curry | coconut | lime | toast
Serving Note I wasn’t expecting it, but as it turns out, this soup is as good cold as hot. I kept sneaking shots of it from the fridge.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
4 cups trimmed, chopped yellow onions (2 medium-large onions)
4 cups trimmed, chopped celery (8 large ribs) (reserve leaves)
2 cups peeled, cored, chopped Granny Smith apple (2 medium apples)
1 head garlic, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon LunaCafe Garam Masala (or store-bought Madras curry powder)
½ teaspoon turmeric
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
2 cup coconut milk
1 cup cream
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice fine sea salt, to taste freshly ground white pepper, to taste
Coconut Curry Croutons (recipe below)
1 cup torn celery leaf (from inner stalks)
- To prepare soup, in an 8-quart soup pot set over medium-low heat, heat butter and olive oil. Add onion, celery, apple, and garlic. Cook slowly, until vegetables are softened but not browned.
- Add Garam Masala and turmeric, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring.
- Add stock and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, partially cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
- To puree soup, do ONE of the following: A: Strain soup, reserving vegetables and liquid separately, and then use a blender or processor to puree vegetables until smooth, adding a little stock if necessary. In a clean soup pot, recombine stock and pureed vegetables. B: Leaving soup in the pot, puree with an immersion blender. (For an even smoother texture, use a Vitamix blender, or force pureed soup through a triple-mesh strainer.)
- To finish soup, add cream and lime juice. Stir to incorporate.
- Season to taste with salt and white pepper.
- To serve soup, reheat if necessary, ladle into bowls, and top with celery leaf and warmed Coconut Curry Croutons.
Makes 11 cups.
Flavored croutons are a perfect garnish for pureed soups. Toasted, with lots of crunch, they provide a textural contrast that adds interest to the soup.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon cold-pressed, extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon LunaCafe Garam Masala (or Madras curry powder)
1 teaspoon wildflower honey
6-8 ounces cut or torn Ciabatta bread
2 tablespoons dried, shredded coconut coarse sea salt in grinder black pepper in grinder
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together butter, olive oil, garam masala, and honey.
- Add bread and coconut, and toss to coat with butter-oil mixture.
- Grind salt and black pepper over croutons and toss to distribute evenly.
- Place on an edged baking sheet, and bake at 425ºF for about 10 minutes or until golden brown.
- Remove croutons to paper towels to cool.
- When cool, store in airtight freezer bags until needed. Croutons will keep for a few days at room temperature; they can also be frozen. Rewarm to freshen.
Makes 4 cups.
More LunaCafe Spring & Summer Soups
- Cannellini Bean Soup with Italian Sausage, Fingerling Potatoes & Broccoli Raab
- Cold Green Pea Soup (Green Pea Gazpacho)
- Creamy Cauliflower Leek Soup with Curried Mustard Croutons
- Creamy Romaine Soup with Summer Herb Butter & Garlic Croutons
- Curried Tomato & Red Lentil Soup
- Fresh Corn & Chipotle Soup with Prawn, Avocado, & Lime Escabeche
- Heirloom Carrot Soup with Lemon Verbena, Spearmint & Garlic Gremolata
- Kicky Tomato Strawberry Gazpacho
- Really Wild Mushroom Soup: Two Fabulous Ways
- Roasted Garlic & Sunchoke Soup with Rosemary Hazelnut Pesto & Goat Cheese Crèma
- Roasted Red Bell Pepper Gazpacho
- Spicy Cucumber Gazpacho
- Sweet Carrot Bisque with Umami Pesto
- Triple Celery Soup with Parmesan, Parsley & Garlic Croutons & Parsley Oil
Cookin’ with Gas (inspiration from around the web)
- An Unusual Celery and Pear Bisque | Kitchen Heals Soul (celery, pear)
- Bacon, Celery and Blue Cheese Soup | She Eats Bears (celery, bacon, blue cheese)
- Celery and Blue Cheese Soup | The Independent (celery, blue cheese)
- Celery and Stilton Soup | The English Kitchen (celery, stilton)
- Cold Celery Soup with Apple and Blue Cheese | The Washington Post (celery, apple, blue cheese)
- Creamy Celery and Fennel Soup | Chatelaine (celery, fennel)
- Curried Cream of Celery Soup | Kahakai Kitchen (celery, celery leaf, leek, apple, curry, coconut milk, lime, toasted almond)
- Irish Celery and Apple Soup | One Perfect Bite (celery, green apple, cream)
Thanks for stopping by!
Copyright 2015 Susan S. Bradley. All rights reserved.