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Creamy Parsnip Soup with Tarragon & Pancetta Crisps

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Level: Easy

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Description

Parsnip soup with creme fraiche, tarragon and truffle salt topped with a pancetta crisp.

Ingredients

  • 3 stalks Leeks
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 4 cups Parsnips, Peeled And Roughly Chopped
  • ½ cups White Wine
  • 2 teaspoons Fresh Tarragon, Finely Chopped
  • 4 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  • ½ teaspoons Truffle Salt
  • ½ cups Creme Fraiche (more For Garnish Is Desired)**
  • Sea Salt And Pepper, To Taste
  • 6 slices Pancetta

Preparation

Cut the green part off of the leeks as well as the root end. Slice the remaining leek lengthwise and wash to get rid of any sand that is stuck between the layers. Chop each half of the leeks into thin half moons and chop the garlic.

In a large, heavy bottomed pot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Then add the leeks and garlic. Cook them over a medium heat until they begin to soften but not brown. Add a pinch of (regular) salt and pepper.

Peel and chop the parsnips and add them to the leeks and garlic. Let them cook for a minute or two and then add the white wine. Stir to scrape any brown bits that may have stuck to the bottom of the pot.
Chop the tarragon and add it to the pot. Stir for a moment and then add the chicken broth and, if using, the truffle salt.

Cover and let it simmer until the parsnips are very soft, about 25 minutes. You will need to reduce the heat to a medium low so that the soup simmers rather than boil furiously.

When the parsnips are very soft, puree the soup with an immersion blender until smooth (or use a regular blender, doing so in small batches). Taste for seasoning and add sea salt if needed.

With the pureed soup on a low heat, stir in the creme fraiche. Heat until warmed through.

Serve with a pancetta crisp (recipe below) on top and an extra dollop of creme fraiche with some chopped tarragon mixed in. You can also garnish with little swirl of olive oil.

For the pancetta crisps:
Place thin slices of pancetta in one layer on a parchment paper lined baking sheet (cookie sheet). Bake at 350 F for approximately 20 minutes or until golden brown. As they cool they will become very crispy. Use one or more for each bowl of soup.

Notes
- Feel free to leave it out all together. But if you have recently purchased truffle salt just start with a pinch as it quickly becomes an overbearing flavour.
- If you don’t have creme fraiche, use ⅓ cup whipping cream and a couple tablespoons of sour cream.

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