Smooth Arracacha (Apio) Soup with Paprika

Preparation info

  • Serves

    4

    as a first course

    Appears in

    Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini

    By Elizabeth Schneider

    Published 2001

    • About

    With few ingredients and little time, obliging arracacha is transformed into a silky, light-textured, pumpkin-colored “cream” soup, although it contains no cream. Serve to open a meal for four or as a generous supper for two. For the latter, garnish with toasted, chopped cashews and minced celery leaves. Crunchy corn bread is the perfect accompaniment.

    Ingredients

    • 1 medium onion
    • 3 medium celery stalks
    • 1 tablespoon mild oil, such as corn, safflower, or grapeseed
    • About pounds arracacha
    • 2 teaspoons hot paprika (or add teaspoon hot pepper to 2 teaspoons sweet paprika)
    • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
    • About 4 cups vegetable broth
    • 1 tablespoon kosher salt (omit if broth is salted)
    • 1 orange, quartered

      Method

      1. Dice or chop onion and celery. Warm oil in medium saucepan over moderately low heat. Add onion and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, halve arracacha and־ trim small protrusions. Peel, then cut into rough ¾-inch dice.
      2. Add paprika and ginger to saucepan and stir a minute. Add arracacha, 4 cups broth, and salt and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer, partly covered, until arracacha is tender, about 20 minutes.
      3. Cool soup slightly. Puree in food processor or blender until entirely smooth. Season assertively.
      4. To serve, reheat soup gently, stirring. Add more broth if soup is too thick. Squeeze in orange juice to taste, a section at a time.