I have been waiting for almost a month to make soup from beet roots. Finally, on Friday, my body needed a simple, nourishing meal, & this sounded perfect.
I know soups are meant to be a throw-all-into-the-pot-sort-of-endeavor, but I seem to like to make simple soups that highlight a main ingredient with just a couple other flavors. I drew inspiration for this soup from the roasted garlic & beet soup at Wholesome Living. Roasted garlic is fantastic; but I had a couple fresh green garlics in my CSA share. What a shame it would be to roast them! Generally I am not a fan of raw garlic, but green garlic has a lighter, almost floral taste. I did not include them raw, but threw them in the pot at only the last minute -- just long enough to soften them a touch without losing their delicate, fresh pungency.
Garlic is supposed to be good for your immune system, & I was starting to feel a touch under the weather late last week. My appetite hasn't been strong, but my body is craving light soups, juices, & smoothies. Liquid nourishment I suppose.
The original recipe called for fresh thyme, but tarragon is my favorite herb to pair with beets. Feel free to substitute fresh for the dried the recipe calls for.
I was absolutely tickled with the pretty pink color.
- 3 medium to large chioggia beets (or golden or red)
- coconut oil for cooking
- 1 small leek, white parts
- 2 cloves green garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups water
- sea salt & fresh ground pepper, to taste
- Meyer lemon* (garnish)
- extra-virgin olive oil (optional)
Wrap beets in tinfoil with a dab of coconut oil & roast at 425*F until tender, about 1 hour depending on size of beets. Allow to cool enough to handle & slide skins from beets.
Quarter beets, slice leek into half moons, mince garlic.
Heat a small dab of coconut oil in a small to medium pot over medium heat. Add leek & cook, stirring often, until tender for 4 to 6 minutes. Add beets & garlic & cook for a moment, stirring. Add tarragon, bay leaf, & about 2 cups water. Season with salt & pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat & simmer about **5 to 10 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Using an immersion blender, blend smooth. Stir in lemon juice, adjust seasoning to taste, & pour into serving bowls. Drizzle with olive oil if desire.
*Meyer lemons aren't necessary; any lemon will do. I'm particularly fond of Meyers, & the CSA has had a bounty of them recently.
**The longer soups simmer, the more flavors develop; feel free to simmer it over the stove longer. The flavors will also be more developed the next day, so soups make for tasty leftovers. I even enjoyed it cold.
I did not drizzle with olive oil, but I think it is lovely over soups. Toasted pumpkin seeds would also make a nice garnish.