Yesterday it seemed like winter was still here. Should we switch to soups again instead of sticking with crispy salads? I personally think we should.
Jerusalem artichoke is one of those root vegetables, which blends into soups perfectly, giving a dish a smooth and silky texture.
Apart from soups, there is so much you can do with this knobby root! I find its nutty earthy taste and sweetness even more unfolding when browning slightly in ghee or butter. You can sauté and roast this root, too. Oven baked Jerusalem artichokes are dangerously addictive!!! More unusual way to use Jerusalem artichoke is to turn it to an ice cream. I must admit, it’s not my idea. Kurt Micallef prepared it for us during our interview it was absolutely delicious!
Going back to the soup, I hope you will give it a try and like it! Keep warm!
Jerusalem artichoke and apple soup with grilled lettuce
- 1 kg Jerusalem artichoke
- ½ lemon
- Olive oil
- 2 leeks, white part only*
- Water or vegetable stock
- 1 small head of lettuce
- 1 big apple, not too sweet and not too sour
- Salt and pepper
- Toasted hazelnuts, sesame seeds, chervil, hazelnut oil and crostini to serve
- First peel the artichokes. Prepare a big bowl filled with cold water and squeeze the juice of a half lemon. Peel the artichokes, washing them under a cold running water as you go and place the peeled roots to the bowl with acidulated water.
- Heat the oil in a medium pot. Roughly chop the leeks and add them to the pan. Sweat leeks until soft but do not let them brown.
- Chop the artichokes in chunks and add to the pot. Cook for a few minutes, turning them in oil and then add water or stock just to cover them. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook until the roots are tender, approximately for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile grill the lettuce. Preheat the grill to medium-high, wash and dry the lettuce. Cut it in half and place on the shallow baking sheet and brush with some olive oil. Cook under the grill turning it every couple of minutes until the lettuce is nicely charred but not burnt. Remove from the oven and then let it cool slightly.
- When the artichokes are almost ready, wash, peel, core the apple, cut it in chunks and add to the pot for the last 5 minutes.
- With a slotted spoon lift the artichokes and apple from the liquid and place in a blender. Whizz them until smooth adding as much liquid d as you need to get the desirable consistency.
- Pour the soup in a clean pot, season it with salt and pepper and reheat.
- Pour in the soup between warmed bowls, garnish with lettuce, hazelnuts seeds and greens and a splash of hazelnut oil. Add one or two crostini to each bowl and enjoy it piping hot!
*small, local ones