January has always felt like a month meant for hibernation. It takes time to recover from the holiday season, and all the marathon socializing that comes with it. And my body is usually telling me “no more finger food, no more people,” and “more blankets, more mindless television.”
But when I feel like holing up like this, I also usually want to cook. Not fussy things that take a long time, or even really involve that much cooking. But simple food that’s more or less good for me—something that’s deeply warming, perhaps with the assistance of a little bit of spice.
This roasted carrot soup is a variation on this soup I created for Serious Eats. It involves almost no cooking: you stick the carrots in the oven to roast, then pull them out and immediately puree them in a blender or food processor with the liquids. By roasting the carrots, you concentrate their flavor, and by adding red curry paste and coconut milk, you make the combination more dynamic. The result is a soup that tastes like it’s been on the stove for hours, rather one that hasn’t been there in the first place. If you have the time, this soup, like any, can always benefit from those extra minutes simmering away. But if you’re too busy camping out on the couch, this might just been the cooking-free fix of home cooking you need.
From my kitchen, albeit small, to yours,
Phoebe, THE QUARTER-LIFE COOK
Roasted Carrot Red Curry Soup
Makes 4-6 servings (6 cups)
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 small red onions, quartered
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 inch ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1-2 teaspoons Thai red curry paste
2 cups chicken or veggie stock
One 15-ounce can coconut milk ( full fat)
Toasted coconut flakes (optional)
Preheat oven to 425°F.
In a medium mixing bowl, toss carrot and onion with oil, sugar, and salt. Spread the veggies evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes, until browned and tender, stirring once halfway through.
Transfer the veg to a food processor or blender along with the ginger, 1 teaspoon curry paste, and the stock. Blend until incorporated. Add coconut milk and blend until smooth. Taste for seasoning and add salt and additional curry paste if you like spice. Add lime juice and any additional liquid if you prefer your soup thinner in texture. Spoon into bowls and serve with cilantro or toasted coconut for garnish.