Sunday, March 30, 2008


"Are those rutabagas?" I thought, looking at a purple, circular root vegetable. Turns out they were, and I would be getting to know them quite well before the end of the day at Lacroix.

I peeled all the rutabagas (must've been 30!!!) in the walk-in fridge. Sliced a few about 1/2 inch thick, seasoned them with oil, salt and pepper, then roasted them at 325 for about 25 covered in foil, then took the foil off for about 10 more. Now, before I go on, I must mention what a pain in the neck rutabagas are to cut. Oh my goodness, I managed even slices only after cutting a slice then evening (not night time) out the height for five minutes. I can feel caluses coming in on my knife hand, and fingers growing back on the other. Anyway, roasted rutabaga is quite tasty, now I was to make some soup!

I love a good soup. I hate a good Campbells. With time-crunched (or so they say) parents, the atrocity that is Campbell's chicken noodle has been rearing its ugly head in my kitchen since the beginning of my time! Battles have been fought, and lost, by me, because no matter how much I express my distaste, my pantry stays chock-full of it. There is nothing better however, than a good homemade soup on a chilly day. I was told that though it's tough to cut, rutabagas make a fantastic soup.

I diced the rutabagas that I hadn't used for roasting to about 1 inch squares. I sliced four onions, and crushed a handful of garlic cloves. I threw these in a large pot with the rutabaga cubes and covered this with water, then added two quarts of cream (we were making a lot of soup don't worry), and let this cook down. Unfortunately at this time, it was about 8:30 and my mother was there to pick me up, so I was unable to see the end product. I do, however fully intend to make rutabaga soup at home someday. For the home kitchen, I would peel and dice about 5 rutabagas, slice one onion and add a few cloves of garlic. Cover this mixture with water then season with salt and pepper. Cook until the rutabaga offers no resistance when pierced with a fork, then puree and pass through a fine sieve. Check the consistency, and either further reduce to thicken, or serve as is, but first check the seasoning, and add more salt or pepper as necessary. Add some chopped chives, whipped cream, or maybe even drizzle some olive oil on top. That should give you a perfect, luscious creamy soup perfect for a chilly day.

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