When I walk through the market in the fall and early winter – there seems to be an abundance of carrots right through early winter. Add a cooked potato or two to this, or even some roasted or steamed cauliflower. I like to puree it but keep it pretty chunky.

1 ¼ lb. carrots
1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 large yellow onion or one fat leek, chopped
3 C. or more of vegetable or chicken stock
juice of 1/2 a lemon
salt to taste

Optional Toppings: Crème fraiche, sour cream, or Greek yogurt, spicy garlic oil, chili oil or toasted sesame oil to drizzle, toasted pine nuts, chopped scallions, crispy fried shallots, chopped chives…

Clean your carrots, and cut them into 1-inch chunks and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy soup pot over medium heat. Add garlic and onions and sauté until the onions are translucent. Add the stock and carrots and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the carrots are just tender. Let soup cool for a few minutes.

Puree with a hand blender or in a blender, then stir in the lemon juice, and then salt to taste. The salt is the key here, salt is a flavor enhancer and you want the flavor to be bright, so add a pinch and taste, add a pinch and taste, until you get it just right. Finish with a drizzle of any of the above oils, or a dollop of crème fraiche or yogurt with a sprinkle of scallions and pine nuts.

Serves 2 generously

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