We have a fun kid’s classic book called The Tawny Scrawny Lion, where a lion gives up chasing and eating all the animals to spend time with the rabbits. He adores their yummy carrot stew. Although this soup is not technically a stew, we have fun calling it thus–just like in The Tawny Scrawny Lion. Whatever works and whatever gets my kids eating more vegetables and health promoting spices. Use what motivates them. Use what motivates them.
Carrot Stew (Soup)
9-10 long, full-sized, unpeeled carrots (nearly 2 pounds) (I like to use organic)
3 medium-sized cloves of garlic
2-4 tablespoonsful olive oil, depending on whether you use a non-stick pan or how much carrot you chop
1 teaspoonsful salt or to taste
1 teaspoonful ground ginger or about 1 tablespoon fresh, finely chopped ginger
1/2 teaspoonful ground coriander
1/4 teaspoonful ground turmeric
1 teaspooonful of cinnamon
1 quart broth, approximate (I use homemade and have used chicken, beef, and lamb broth)
Optional but best:
1 cup of your favorite milk, approximate
1-3 T maple syrup or honey, depending on how sweet your family likes it
Cinnamon and nutmeg for garnish on top
1. Wash and scrub carrots well. Cut off ends. No need to peel if you don’t want to.
2. Coarsely chop carrot, onion, and garlic (and fresh ginger if you are using fresh) in a food processor. (Or use a hand-help chopper of simply a knife. Whatever you have.)
3. In a heavy-bottomed soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat and add the carrot, onion, garlic, and all the spices.
4. Saute until the onion is soft and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Don’t worry about softening up the carrots yet.
5. Add just enough broth to cover the vegetables (about 2 cups, plus or minus) and bring to a simmer. Simmer until all the pieces of carrot are very soft and “smooshable,” adding more broth as needed to keep the vegetables covered.
6. When the carrots are soft, use an immersion blender to blend the soup smooth, adding more broth or your favorite milk to achieve the consistency of soup you desire. Blend in the maple syrup or honey, if desired. (If you don’t have an immersion blender, then carefully blend in a blender with some cool broth or milk. The steam makes this a potentially dangerous matter. I know. Add broth or milk to desired consistency.) Taste it! Does it need a touch more salt, milk, or sweetener? Or is it just right?
7. Garnish with cinnamon and nutmeg on top.
Family “gustar” report: 5/5 like it! A visiting guest surprised herself by liking it a lot too! We like it best with the milk and maple syrup. I’ve used almond milk and coconut milk for this. To achieve the pretty white swirl for a garnish, drizzle a little bit of coconut milk on the top and use the end of a knife or a toothpick to swirl it through.
Dragging my kids along on this food journey has been challenging but oh so rewarding! That’s easy to say now that we’re on the other side. It wasn’t always easy. Don’t give up. Be creative. Find what motivates them. Their health is worth it.