I can't wait for the cool weather to arrive. The sunshine is wonderful, but I love crisp autumn days. I have been munching mostly on sandwiches and salads, anything I can toss together in about 3 minutes. This heat just seems to sap my energy in terms of both cooking and appetite.
Carrots are in season in Texas at the moment, and when I saw them at the market I immediately thought of soup and cooler weather. I got up very early this morning while it was still relatively cool and made this delicious soup. It's slightly hot, slightly tart and slightly sweet. The flavour is quite amazing considering very little work goes into making it. This soup reheats really well, so if you are cooking for a crowd, you can easily double or triple this recipe.
2 tsp olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 medium sweet or yellow onion, chopped
1 tsp harissa, or more to taste
1 tsp sweet paprika
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 lb carrots, cleaned and cut up
3 cups water
1 1/2 tsp Better than Bouillon, Vegetable
1 cup plain yogurt
1-2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste
1-2 tsp honey, to taste
salt, if needed
small handful fresh cilantro, chopped
Heat the oil in a soup pot (one with a well fitting lid) and add the garlic. Stir until the garlic is fragrant; about 30 seconds, then add the onion. Adjust the heat to keep it from burning and saute the garlic and onion mixture until the onion is translucent; about 8 minutes.
Stir in the harissa, paprika, coriander, cumin and cinnamon. Stir until the spices are fragrant. Add the carrots, water and Better than Bouillon paste. Cover the pot and simmer the vegetables gently over low heat for 30-40 minutes or until the carrots pierce easily with a knife.
Puree the soup using a hand held immersion blender or transfer the soup in batches into the bowl of a food processor or blender and process until smooth. It doesn't have to be perfect. A few remaining chunky pieces can be nice. Return to the soup pot.
Whisk in the yogurt, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1 teaspoon of honey. Taste and add more lemon juice or honey, if desired. Add salt, if needed (Better than Bouillon already contains salt).
Heat the soup through. Ladle into bowls and top with the chopped cilantro. Serve.