About a month ago, I traveled to a Hope and Harmony Peanut Farm in Virginia. It was an incredible experience in which I learn all about peanut harvesting and dined on meals prepared with peanuts in ways I never imagined by James Beard Award Chefs. It was heavenly.
One of the soups that I had during my visit was a Sweet Potato and Peanut Soup. The chef said it was just sweet potatoes, onions, garlic sautéed with peanut oil and then simmered with water and seasonings. So simple, yet so perfect.
I have decided to recreate this heavenly soup with carrots instead of sweet potatoes. And it was just as good as what I had experienced in Virginia. Maybe even a bit better–because I took it up a notch and topped this soup with spiced peanuts for a kick of heat and flavor.
It is amazing to me that such simple ingredients can truly create a dish full of robust flavor. I really feel that it is from the magic that happens by just a touch of roasted peanut oil and simple, fresh vegetables.
Once my vegetables began to brown and the aromatics of the peanut oil filled my kitchen, I added in water and seasonings. Yes, you can use stock, but the chef told me that water is best to let the flavors of the peanut oil carry through.
Once the soup has simmered and the vegetables have softened, I used an emersion blender (but you can use a blender) to blend this soup to a creamy consistency.
Vegan Carrot Soup with Spiced Peanuts
- 1 tablespoon roasted peanut oil
- 3 pounds carrots peeled and chopped into 1 inch chunks
- 1 large onion diced into 1 inch chunks
- 3 cloves of garlic peeled
- 4 cups water
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt more to taste
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprkia
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 cup spiced peanuts--recipe in instructions
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro optional
Heat peanut oil large heavy-bottomed sauce-pan over medium-high heat. Add in carrots, onion and garlic. Cook for about 5 minutes, until peanut oil is fragrant and vegetables are beginning to brown.
Add in water, bay leaves, and seasonings.
Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and let cook for 25-30 minutes, or until carrots are tender.
Puree the soup using an emersion blender or regular blender. If using a regular blender, work in batches and be careful to let steam escape.
Top with chopped cilantro and toasted peanuts.
To make Spiced Peanuts: Toss 1/2 cup peanuts with 1/2 teaspoon each of smoked paprika and chili powder and then toast in dry skillet for 5 minutes over medium heat.
For more Carrot Recipes check out what Food Network is sharing on Fall Fest this week:
The Lemon Bowl: Roasted Root Vegetable Soup
Creative Culinary: Carrot and Zucchini Quick Bread with Toasted Walnuts and a Cinnamon Nutmeg Glaze
Devour: 5 Gorgeous Carrot Recipes That Will Make You Eat With Your Eyes
Hey Grill Hey: Bacon Wrapped Maple Glazed Carrots
The Mediterranean Dish: Turmeric Roasted Carrots
The Fed Up Foodie: Carrot Cucumber Asian Slaw
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Carrot Peas Pilaf
A Mind “Full” Mom: Vegan Carrot Soup with Spiced Peanuts
Pinch My Salt: Carrot Tomato Chipotle Soup
Healthy Eats: 7 Healthy Ways to Turn Carrots Into Cake
The Mom 100: Carrot, Cabbage and Kohlrabi Slaw with Miso Dressing
Taste with the Eyes: Baby Rainbow Carrots with Hazelnuts, Truffle, and Hollandaise
FN Dish: 6 Carrot Treats That Deserve a Spot in Your Thanksgiving Dessert Spread