Literally, the French expression “les carottes sont cuites” means that the carrots are cooked. Figuratively, it means that the jig is up, that whatever one is discussing is all over and can’t be changed, that one is saying “ENOUGH ALREADY!” We can hope in this case that it means that our long winter has been cooked.
The cooked carrots in the soup below are ideal for the sort of spring we have had so far in the northeast. In this chilly weather soup calls to us.
The curry powder and cumin lend an Indian tang to the mundane root vegetables, and the finished product pleases the eye and the palate.
If you don’t have a blender or immersion blender on hand (my sister-in-law Leigh and I couldn’t find one the first time we served this, although it turned up for subsequent meals!), a potato masher will render the potatoes and carrots small enough to make them sippable.
This colorful soup would make a lovely first course for an Easter dinner or a Seder (if you keep Kosher and want to use it in your Seder you might want to substitute olive oil for the butter).
By the way, Margie from Shreveport, Louisiana, won The Cast-Iron Skillet Cookbook. She seemed very pleased when I wrote to her. Thanks to all those who entered the drawing for this book! I’ll try to have another one soon.
Meanwhile, happy Easter, happy Passover, and happy spring! Warmer weather WILL come….
1 stick butter (you may certainly use less butter if you like; this makes a very rich soup!)
2 large onions, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 medium potatoes, roughly diced (2 large potatoes make a heartier soup)
2 pounds carrots, roughly diced (between 5 and 6 cups)
6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
2 teaspoons salt (and/or to taste)
1 teaspoon cumin
1 generous tablespoon curry powder
the juice of 1/2 lemon
In a large saucepan or Dutch oven melt the butter. Sauté the onions and garlic; then stir in the potatoes and carrots. Cook for a few minutes, stirring frequently, and then add the stock and the salt.
Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover the soup, and reduce the heat. Simmer until the vegetables are tender (about 1/2 hour).
Puree the soup, either in batches in a blender or in its pot using an immersion blender. Stir in the spices, and heat the soup again briefly. Taste and adjust seasonings. Just before serving add the lemon juice.
Serves 6 to 8.
If you don’t use all your soup at the first serving, you may certainly refrigerate the leftovers for another meal. When you reheat the soup it tends to become very thick and erupt. Feel free to add a bit more stock to settle it down. You may also want to add more spices as their flavor tends to dissipate over time.