David Augenti, Chef
Market Restaurant, Montclair
Baby carrots are such a simple pleasure to work with. With their bright orange root to the feather-like vibrant green tops, they remind me of the great vegetables and fruits we get to play with in the upcoming spring and summer months. This is an easy soup to prepare for those slightly chilly evenings in early spring.
- 2 pounds baby carrots with tops (local farmers’ markets are the best places to find these)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- zest of 1 orange
- juice of zested orange
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2–3 tablespoons cream (optional)
- salt to taste
- Cut green tops off baby carrots and set aside. Roughly chop baby carrots, put into medium-size sauce pot and just barely cover carrots with filtered or spring water. Add cinnamon sticks, orange zest and a pinch of salt, then cover pot. Simmer until carrots become soft, approximately 20 minutes. Set aside and do not strain liquid.
- Meanwhile, in a blender, blend the carrot tops with the orange juice until you have a smooth green puree. Add a little water if needed to help blend. Set aside and rinse blender.
- After carrots have cooled slightly, remove cinnamon sticks and place carrots and liquid in blender. Adding a little water if necessary, blend until you have a smooth soup mixture. Return soup to stove top, add a touch of cream (optional), and season with salt and honey (about 1/3 cup) to taste. The key here is to not overpower these delicate spring delights and let them speak for themselves. Ladle into bowls and garnish with a teaspoon of the green carrot-top puree.
- Have fun and swirl it around the top of the soup with a toothpick.