This winter has been brutal. And that’s a scary thing to say when it isn’t even the middle of February yet, because you know that it’s really nowhere near over. Granted, here in Nashville it has not been nearly as bad as it has in, say, Chicago. I think that I might even be glad that I’m not living in Chicago at the moment. But it’s still been cold here, and my apartment is not made for cold weather (lack of insulation, drafty fireplace, etc). So, needless to say, along with most of the rest of the country, I’ve been really cold lately. And when I’m cold like this, the only thing that I know will make me feel warm is some good, hot soup. Even better if that soup has “warming” flavors, like roasted garlic, chipotle peppers and, of course, sweet potatoes!
I couldn’t find a recipe that incorporated all of the flavors I was looking for, so I made up my own. I think it turned out pretty well!
Warming Roasted Sweet Potato Soup
3 large sweet potatoes (4 medium), peeled and coarsely chopped
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 head of garlic, peeled
1 T coconut oil (liquid or melted)
1 T olive oil
1 T ground chipotle chile pepper (or more, to taste)
1 T turmeric
1 T kosher salt (or more, to taste)
5 c water
2 T sauce from chipotles peppers in adobo (if you want it spicier, also use one of the peppers – no need to chop it, as it will get pureed)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Combine sweet potatoes, onion, garlic cloves, coconut oil, olive oil, spices and salt on a baking sheet – toss to make sure that it all looks shiny and the spices are evenly distributed.
3. Bake until softened and golden, approximately 40 minutes, stirring at least once.
4. When vegetables are almost done roasting, bring 5 cups of water to boil in a large pot.
5. Add vegetables and adobo sauce (and peppers) to the water. Purée with an immersion blender. (Note: if you do not have an immersion blender, you can put the mixture in a regular blender but do NOT put boiling water into a regular blender. That is a recipe for disaster! Instead, use warm water, puree in blender and then put it all in the pot and bring to a boil.). Add additional water as necessary to achieve desired consistency. (You can see in the picture above that mine is pretty thick, if you prefer a thinner soup, plan to add more water).
6. Taste and adjust seasonings as necessary. Enjoy!
Note: I prefer my sweet potato soup on the savory and spicy side. If you want it sweeter, substitute ground black pepper for the chipotle (or omit the pepper altogether). To cut the spice, omit the adobo altogether. For a different kind of spice, you could also sub some fresh grated ginger for the chiles in adobo. Next time I might try using broth instead of water, but this soup already has enough depth that I don’t think it’s necessary.