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Beet and Fennel Soup with Kefir

June 6, 2014 | By | 3 Replies More

beet and fennel soup

If anyone tells you that looks don’t matter, they are lying. This is especially true in the world of food. Otherwise, there would be no such thing as food porn in Urban Dictionary. Well-styled and beautifully-photographed food renders me defenseless, and I want to make and eat that food right now. I am often drawn to new recipes solely from looking at the pictures, as was the case with this pureed beet and fennel soup I spotted in Bon Appetit.

When I ladled this beauty into our gleaming white shallow soup bowls and drizzled on a wisp of white kefir followed by feathery fennel fronds, I reasoned that if beet and fennel soup tasted only half as good as it looked, we’d be in great shape. Imagine my delight when I discovered that it tastes every bit as good as it looks – and, it’s super-easy to make. This light and flavorful soup is the perfect start to any meal, and it’s capable of standing on its own when served with a crisp salad and crusty bread.

The creaminess of this beet and fennel soup comes from the addition of kefir, a yogurt-like dairy product that’s rich in probiotics and lends a pleasing tartness to the soup. I have modified the original recipe so it’s vegetarian.

Ingredients (Serves 4)

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium chopped yellow onion

1 cup chopped fennel bulb (reserve some fronds for garnish)

1 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds

2 large (3-inch diameter) beets, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks

2 cups vegetable stock

1 cup full fat, unflavored kefir (I used goat kefir), plus more for serving

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

beet and fennel soupStep One

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 medium chopped yellow onion

1 cup chopped fennel bulb

1 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds

Heat the olive oil in a stockpot over medium heat. Add onion, chopped fennel and fennel seeds and saute for about 5 minutes until vegetables are softened.

 Step Two

2 large (3-inch diameter) beets, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks

2 cups vegetable stock

Add the beets to the pot and stir to combine. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Cover the pan and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the beets are tender. Using an immersion blender, carefully puree the soup. Try not to splatter since beets can stain!

Step Three

1 cup full fat, unflavored kefir

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Whisk in the kefir and season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle into soup bowls, drizzle with additional kefir and sprinkle with fennel fronds.




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Category: General, Recipes, Spring

Comments (3)

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  1. Mselysse says:

    This looks amazing. I love beets and fennel so I’ll have to try this! If I don’t have an immersion blender can I put it in the Vitamix instead?

    • Brande says:

      I think you could totally use the Vitamix. I tested this recipe before I bought my own Vitamix, and now, I’d surely use it for this. The only caveat is that sometimes Vitamix just has you literally blend AND cook the soup in it because it can generate the heat to do so, but I find that some flavor is lost that way when you don’t sweat the vegetables together in a pot first. For this soup, you definitely would want all that goodness from the sauteed fennel in the pot, so I would just follow the recipe almost to the end and then carefully transfer the soup to the Vitamix. I hope you try the soup and enjoy it!

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