With its distinct flavor, parsnips—the white carrot-like vegetables you may have seen in the produce section—are a great winter root vegetable and are typically served with roasted meats. Last winter I discovered this cream of parsnip soup and immediately made a mental note to make it again this year. The pure simplicity of the soup really showcases the root vegetable with few other additions. It is velvety, comforting and perfect for harsh winter days.
Cream of Parsnip Soup
Adapted from Canyon Ranch via Epicurious
1 tablespoon butter
2 shallots, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
2 pounds parsnips*, peeled and sliced
5 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar
Sea salt, to taste
1 pinch black pepper
3/4 cup half and half (I had cream on hand, so I made my own with half cream and half milk)
Melt butter over medium heat. Add shallots and onion and cook until translucent and soft. Add parsnips, chicken stock and white balsamic vinegar. Cook over low heat for 45 minutes or until parsnips are tender. Puree using an immersion blender or standard blender. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in half and half.
*Smaller parsnips tend to me more tender, which is favorable for a soup like this.