Chilled Carrot Soup with Roasted Corn Salsa

With carrots harvested from my garden taking up all the space in my fridge’s vegetable drawer, I needed to get cooking in a hurry. Tomorrow I’ll share my attempt to create a palatable carrot cake (which has long been one of my least-favorite cakes). Today we’re talking chilled soups.

I wanted to take this soup in a Latin direction, so my first instinct was to flavor it with jalapeño peppers and cilantro. As I developed the recipe further I decided to explore the cilantro flavor two ways: In a salsa topping the soup and through the cilantro plant’s seeds, coriander.

I didn’t want overwhelming flavors, so I avoided using garlic. I knew the spiciness from the jalapeño would mellow as it cooked, and it ended up providing the perfect amount of heat. I love the contrast in texture between the perfectly smooth soup and the crunchy corn in the salsa.

My soup started out too thick and too much like baby food, but I just kept thinning it with stock. In the end I had a well-balanced dish that will serve eight for a small first course or four as part of a main course. I served this soup for dinner along with a side of quesadillas.

It’s best to make this soup in the morning, so it has time to chill in the refrigerator. If you’re pressed for time like I was, the freezer works, too.

Soup ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeds removed and diced
  • 3 pounds carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 quart low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Salsa ingredients:

  • 2 ears of corn
  • 2 avocados, seeded and diced
  • Half a bunch cilantro, stems removed and chopped (about half a cup)
  • Juice from 1 lime

Step 1. Warm the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, season well with salt and pepper and cook until sweating and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the jalapeños and cook for another 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently.

Step 2. Add the carrot chunks and toss to combine. Season well with salt again. Cook for 5 minutes, until the carrots begin to sweat.

 

 

Step 3. Add the stock and coriander and stir. Bring to a boil, then reduce and simmer for 30 minutes.

 

 

 

Step 4. Transfer half of the carrots and broth to a blender and puree until smooth. Pour out into a holding bowl, then puree the remaining carrots.

 

 

Step 5. This step is the most arduous, but also the most important if you want a silky smooth soup. Pour the blended soup into a fine-mesh strainer, then press it through.

 

Step 6. Whisk in the sour cream, then taste and check the seasoning level. I added 1/2 teaspoon of salt at this stage. Cover and chill the soup until serving.

 

 

Step 7. To make the salsa, start by roasting the corn ears over a burner’s open flame. Rest the corn on the burner grate and turn it when the kernels begin to blacken (some will burst). It helps to leave a large handle when shucking the corn to make turning it easier.

Step 8. Cut the corn off the cob and toss with the diced avocado, cilantro, lime juice and a little salt. Spoon the soup into bowls and top with the salsa before serving.

 

  • Andrea Desherb

    Hi I just found your blog thru a ‘pinterest friend’ I love carrot soup but never had it chilled although I do love chilled soups. Sadly my husband would never even try a chilled soup, how did this soup taste heated before you chilled it, would you consider serving this soup chilled in the fall? 

    • http://themanlyhousekeeper.com Mark Evitt

      You can definitely serve it warm, too. I think it works well both ways. I served it chilled because I didn’t really want to eat a warm soup in the summer.

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