There’s nothing like a hot soup on a cold day — and what’s better than feeling extra warm inside knowing that you can make a delicious soup from almost nothing? The basic formula for soup is a little bit of fat + some homemade broth (something you can make from food scraps and or bones) + some meat if desired + whatever veggies you have on hand in your fridge.
For this soup, we’ve used a simple list of ingredients and elevated the flavours with the royal duo of spices. Cardamom is the ‘queen’ of this soup, and black pepper is the ‘king.’
Cardamom is grown primarily in the moist forests of southern India, cardamom is known as the ‘queen’ of spices, while black pepper, grown mostly in South Asia, is referred to as the ‘king’ of spices. They are the most widely sought-after spice crop in the world, having both culinary and medicinal uses.
This yummy soup is adult and kid (and baby!) approved. Serves 6-8.
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup of leeks, tender, white/light green parts only, chopped
2 ½ tbsp chopped garlic
5 cups chicken broth
3 cups peeled and diced carrots
2 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
¼ cup heavy cream, or clotted cream
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp salt, to taste
1 tsp freshly ground cardamom
- Preheat oven to 300°F.
- In a large pot (like a Dutch oven), brown the butter on medium. Continuously stir as butter melts, then starts to foam and sizzle. The butter is ‘browned’ after 3-5 minutes when the butter has turned golden brown, the foam will have subsided a bit, and you’ll see milk solids on the bottom of the pan. But most importantly, the butter will have an intoxicating nutty, buttery fragrance.
- Add leeks and garlic, your aromatics, to the browned butter and sauté until just soft. Never overcook garlic.
- Add your freshly ground cardamom and let it ‘bloom’ for 30 seconds in the browned butter. This will draw out the fat-soluble flavours of the cardamom.
- Add your broth and scrape off any tasty browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Add veggies and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to a gentle simmer, roughly 20 minutes, or until veggies are tender.
- While veggies simmer, prepare your peppered pepitas, and blend your honey and cream together and set aside.
- Once cooked, transfer the soup to a blender and add the salt, ½ teaspoon at a time to taste, and purée until smooth. When you are adding the salt, remember that the pepitas will be salty too.
- Serve soup immediately, drizzle with honey cream and sprinkle with a handful of peppered pepitas.
2 cups pepitas
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
¾ tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 300°F.
- Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Toss all ingredients together and spread in a single layer on your parchment paper.
- Bake for 10 minutes, stir. Then bake for another 10-20 minutes until seeds are golden, puffy, sizzling and crunchy.
- Store in an air-tight jar.
Soup can be frozen and reheated to be served later. And, you’ll want to make extra pepitas because you’ll be snacking on them as soon as they’re cool enough to pop into your mouth.
Claire Dam is a farmer, a homesteader, a creator, a writer, and a photographer. She specializes in portraiture – such as weddings, families, newborns and lifestyle headshots. She shoots with film and digital on variety of cameras old and new.