Weekday Vegetarian: Pear Soup
Photo: Kelly Rossiter
This delicious pear soup is the perfect bridge between the late summer harvest and the need for a warming soup on a cool evening. Not only that, it is the perfect bridge between sweet and savoury. You won't see a lot of dessert or sweet recipes here in my column, because I just don't have a sweet tooth, but this was just the right mixture for me. My one regret is that I didn't have blue cheese, so I substituted gruyere. I'll have to make it again while pears are still in season, because blue cheese and pear is such a fantastic flavour combination.The original recipe for this had pancetta and creme fraiche which I didn't use. I originally planned to add some 18% cream, but I thought the taste of the soup was rich enough without the addition of the dairy. If you wanted to leave the cheese garnish off the top, it would still be a really wonderful soup, and it would be vegan.
This recipe is from the website Five and Spice.
1 tablespoon butter
1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, sliced
1/2 pound potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes (around 1/2 inch)
1 medium-small carrot, cut into small cubes
1 tablespoon maple syrup
5 pears peeled, cored, and cut into 1 inch chunks
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
3 cups vegetable broth
Crumbled blue cheese (a creamy, potent raw milk one is best, if you can get it) for serving
Salt and pepper to taste
1 . In a large pot add butter and heat over medium until foaming. Then, stir in the onion, turn the heat down to medium-low, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, until the onion is soft. Do not let it brown.
2. . Stir in the garlic, potato, and carrot, cover again. Turn the heat to medium and cook another 10 minutes. Then, add in the maple syrup, pear, 1 1/2 tsp. salt, thyme, sage and nutmeg. Cook, stirring frequently for 5 minutes to get the pear all coated with the syrup and other flavors.
3. Add in the broth, bring to a boil, then turn down to a simmer and cook, covered, until the potatoes and pears are soft, about 15 minutes.
4. Blend in batches until smooth, or use an immersion blender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle blue cheese on top and serve immediately.