January 10, 2008
Roasted Potato Soup
I decided to take a break from the Veganomicon marathon I’ve been running by doing something I fear very much. It’s a fear I’ve known I would need to face eventually, but I put it off until last night.
I decided to make dinner out of my head.
Sure, a lot of people do that on a daily basis, but I am not one of them. I don’t understand how people can cook without the security of a tested recipe. I really want to come up with a few recipes of my own, though, and I had an idea.
I wanted to veganize this great creamy potato soup with champagne. As I wondered how to make it taste good, it morphed in my head into something different. “Roasting,” I thought to myself, “roasting makes everything taste good.” And so the roasting commenced. I roasted the potatoes, I roasted some garlic, and I decided to serve roasted broccoli on the side. Then I thought, “Mmm, caramelized onions. You can’t go wrong with caramelized onions.” So I caramelized a couple onions, added various liquids, and threw everything into the food processor.
The result was pretty different from the original soup I had planned to imitate, but it didn’t matter. It tasted good. It’s very thick (“it looks like oatmeal,” says my mom) and pretty rich because of the roasting, and we all liked it. The roasted garlic adds a nice nutty flavor to it. (Oh, and the broccoli was good too—I prefer roasting to almost any other broccoli preparation.) This recipe is very approximate, but it’s soup. You can eyeball basically everything. It also made a ton, so feel free to halve it.
Roasted Potato Soup
5 medium potatoes (I used Yukon gold, but only because we had them on hand)
1/2 head garlic
2 large white onions
vegetable broth or water, to taste (at least a few cups)
soymilk or soy creamer, to taste
dry white wine, to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 425°.
2. Cut the potatoes into bite-size pieces. Place them in a bowl, drizzle liberally with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and toss. Spread them on a cookie sheet.
3. Remove the outer skin of the garlic, leaving the individual cloves in their skin. Drizzle with olive oil and wrap in tin foil.
4. Put the potatoes and the garlic in the oven. They should both take about 45-55 minutes.
5. Go read the comics for a while. Fifteen or twenty minutes before the potatoes are due to come out, preheat a skillet with a couple tablespoons of olive oil.
6. Cut the onions any way you like, as long as they’re reasonably small. When the skillet is hot enough, put the onions in on high heat, stirring occasionally until they’re brown but not burnt.
7. Once everything’s ready (remove the garlic from its skin, obviously), put it all in the food processor and blend, adding the liquids until you get the desired consistency. Taste along the way to see how much wine and soymilk you want. (You may need to blend it in batches.) Rewarm if necessary and garnish with rosemary or whatever fresh herbs you have on hand.