I've nicknamed my bedroom, The Trans Siberia. I think the name says it all. It's just so freeezing in here while the rest of the house?...absolutely normal lol. And no it's not because it's getting colder outside. Even in the warm summer months, it's still super cold. A mystery unsolved, I'm afraid.
With that as my inspiration and a fridge full of GREEN vegetables, I knew what I had in mind--a nice, creamy, all veggie soup for those cold autumn nights or as a snack after a nice morning walk. It may be all vegetables, but the addition of cremini mushrooms makes it very hearty and satisfying. I learned that a great way to create that creamy, milky thick consistency without having to use cream is by using a potato instead.
Yep, you read that right.The thickness of the soup is achieved by using potatoes in place of cream. I never would've guessed! Potatoes are very starchy and as a result adds thickness as well as flavor that you won't get with just cream alone. I like using red potatoes because it's one of the smoother potatoes when pureed.
- 2 large zucchini
- 1 large handful of fresh spinach leaves (more for color, than flavor)
- 1 large onion
- 2 medium sized carrots
- 3 red potatoes peeled
- 10 large basil leaves (save some for garnish) finely chopped
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 C cremini mushrooms
- 2 tsp ground fennel
- 2 tsp of salt(seems like a lot, but too little of it will disappear in the thick potatoes)
- black pepper (to taste)
- 4 C chicken broth (vegetable broth for vegetarians)
- 2 C water
Roughly chop all the vegetables. In a large soup pot, saute zucchini, onions, carrots, and potato in oil until slightly tender. Add spinach, basil, broth, water and spices. Bring up to a boil with the lid on over high heat, then switch to medium and let simmer lid off until all the vegetables are soft.
Turn off fire, then using an immersion blender, puree all vegetables until creamy and thick. If you'd like it to be thicker, let it simmer for longer until it reaches your desired thickness. (You can also do this process in batches using a blender.) Add the mushrooms last minute. Garnish with fresh basil.