Gingered Carrot Soup with Creme Fraiche

This is one of my favorite soup recipes. Despite sounding like something at a nice restaurant, and despite looking like something at a nice restaurant, and despite tasting like something at a nice restaurant, it's easy and fast to make at home. I've served it at all kinds of occasions and always get rave reviews. I like that it's a thicker puree, so it's filling and feels more like a meal than an appetizer. Add in the creme fraiche and it's just plain delicious.

Gingered Carrot Soup with Creme Fraiche

2 tablespoons unsalted butter 
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 pounds large carrots, peeled and thinly sliced 
1 large onion, very thinly sliced
1-2 T finely grated fresh ginger (I use 1T)
4 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup creme fraiche or sour cream
2 T coarsely chopped cilantro

1. In a medium soup pot, melt the butter in the olive oil. Add the sliced carrots, sliced onion and grated ginger, cover and cook over moderately high heat for about 8 minutes, stirring the vegetables occasionally, until just beginning to soften. Add the vegetable stock and nutmeg to the vegetables and season liberally with salt and pepper. Cover and cook the soup over moderate heat until the carrots and onions are very soft, about 10 minutes.

2. Puree the carrot soup in batches in a blender. Return the carrot soup to the soup pot. Stir in the crème fraîche and chopped cilantro and season the carrot soup with salt and pepper. Serve the soup in shallow bowls.

Recipe Source: Food and Wine Magazine

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