3 Spring Soups + a Batch of Crusty Bread

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It’s early in the season and there’s still a hint of chill in the air. So we’ve hunted down three deliciously light yet satisfying soups to carry you over the threshold into spring.

And what is soup with out a hunk of crusty carb? So we’ve thrown in a rosemary + sea salt crusty bread recipe you can bake in your French oven!

Rosemary and Sea Salt Crusty Bread baked in your French oven. Images sourced from thecookierookie.com

Still clinging to your fave French oven in the wake of winter? Never fear. There’s no need to stash away your casserole dish just yet. Here are four light + savoury soups for spring with a smidge of French inspiration! (Les frogs know cuisine.) And a crusty bread recipe to match them.

There’s plenty for the palate to celebrate at this time of year – for example, the bountiful fresh vegies on show courtesy of the warmer weather… We’re stepping out on the exotic side and greeting the season’s deliciousness with some seriously sumptuous soups.

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Roasted Carrot + Apple Soup w/ Paprika Brown Butter. Images sourced from anediblemosaic.com

Roasted Carrot + Apple Soup w/ Paprika Brown Butter

This soup from An Edible Mosaic fuses sweet with savoury, exploiting the rich nutty flavour of brown butter.

Brown butter adds depth and decadence to your table. Faith from An Edible Mosaic describes the difference between brown + regular butter as being akin to the difference between a roasted nut and a raw nut. Be daring. Try it. After all, French women don’t get chubby…

You need:

4-5 medium-large (about 450g) chunky chopped carrots
1 medium-large onion, chopped into large chunks
1 medium-large sweet/tart apple (unpeeled), cored and quartered
2 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt (plus more to taste)
¼ tsp black pepper
2 tbsp butter
2 large cloves garlic, grated
1 tbsp fresh grated ginger
½ tsp turmeric
⅛ tsp cinnamon
⅛ tsp nutmeg
3 cups low-sodium vegetable / chicken stock
½ tsp ground sweet paprika
Crème fraîche, for garnish (optional)
Minced fresh chives, for garnish (optional)

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Images sourced L to R: anediblemosaic.com and therookiecookie.com

The how:

Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a large baking tray with baking paper.
Toss together carrot, onion, apple, olive oil, ¼ tsp salt, + ⅛ tsp black pepper on the baking sheet and spread out in an even layer.
Roast until tender and starting to turn golden in spots, about 30 mins, stirring once halfway through.
Heat 1 tbsp butter in a medium-sized soup pot over medium heat. Once melted, add garlic, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, nutmeg, + remaining ¼ tsp salt + remaining ⅛ tsp black pepper.
Cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add stock + roasted vegetables, + turn the heat off.
Puree soup in food processor. Transfer soup back to pot + bring to a simmer over medium heat. Taste and season with additional salt as desired.

Brown Butter:

While the soup is coming to a simmer, heat the remaining 1 tbsp butter + the paprika in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
Once melted, cook until butter starts to smell nutty and turn golden, about 1 minute, whisking constantly.
Ladle soup into bowls and serve topped with paprika brown butter, crème fraîche, and chives.

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Spinach + Edamame Egg Drop Soup. Images sourced saveur.com and therookiecookie.com

Spinach + Edamame Egg Drop Soup

We love this soup from Saveur – a little bit Oriental in style, deliciously filling yet light.

You need:

6 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 tbsp finely grated ginger
112 tsp salt, plus more to taste
112 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
3 eggs
2 cups (60g) baby spinach
112 cups cooked, shelled edamame
4 spring onions, thinly sliced

The how:

Bring stock, ginger, + 1 tsp salt to a boil in a large saucepan.
Stir cornstarch + soy sauce in a bowl until smooth, then whisk into stock.
Cook until slightly thickened, 1–2 mins, then remove from heat.
Whisk remaining salt, sesame oil, + eggs in a bowl. Slowly add egg mixture whilst gently whisking broth to scatter eggs as they cook. Stir in spinach and edamame until spinach is wilted, about 1 min.
Season with salt. Divide soup between 4 bowls and top with onions. Serve!

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Green Garlic And Pea Soup With Whipped Cream. Images sourced bonappetit.com and therookiecookie.com

Green Garlic And Pea Soup With Whipped Cream

Spring is all about that fresh vernal green. Add this dynamic hue to your entertaining with this divine crisp tasting soup. So quick and easy to make from Bon Appetit! Okay, there is a little pea shelling involved if you’re going fresh…

Hint: The key to a vibrant green (rather than murky khaki) soup is to bring the water up to a boil quickly over high heat. Err on the side of undercooking the peas to preserve their colour!

You need:

2 bunches green garlic (about 450g)
tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups shelled fresh peas (from about 900g pods) or frozen peas, thawed
⅓ cup heavy cream

The how:

Cut dark-green tops from garlic and slice crosswise 15mm thick. Slice bulbs and pale-green stalks crosswise 5mm thick.
Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add bulbs and stalks, season with salt + pepper, and cook, stirring often, until beginning to soften (8–10 mins).
Add tops and cook, stirring often, until soft (about 3 mins).
Add 4 cups water to saucepan and bring to a boil. Add peas, reduce heat, and simmer gently until peas are bright green and tender (about 5 mins).
Let cool slightly, then purée soup in a blender with remaining 2 tbsp oil, adding water to thin if needed, until smooth.
Strain soup through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean saucepan, pressing on solids. Season with salt + pepper. Reheat briefly (to preserve colour) before serving.
Beat cream with a whisk in a medium bowl to soft peaks. Season with salt + pepper. Serve soup with a swirl of whipped cream.

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Rosemary and Sea Salt Crusty Bread. Images sourced therookiecookie.com

Rosemary and Sea Salt Crusty Bread

Entertaining to celebrate the turn in seasons? Add the delicious aromas of this crusty bread from the Cookie Rookie to your home. Friends and fam will be intoxicated with its wholesome fragrance even before it reaches their mouths. Who needs wine! (Okay – let’s not go too far.)

Note: The dough needs to stand overnight. Be prepared. This is not a recipe for winging it at the last minute. (From one who knows.)

You need:

3 cups plain flour
1¾ tsp sea salt
½ tsp active dry yeast
1½ cups room temperature water
¾ cup chopped fresh rosemary

The how:

Mix flour, sea salt + yeast in a large bowl. Add in water, using a spatula to blend until combined.
Cover bowl and allow to sit at room temperature overnight, at least 12 hours.
Preheat oven to 230°C. While oven is heating, place French oven in oven to preheat.
Flour work surface + hands. Remove dough from bowl and form into a ball. This is a no-knead recipe, but you may have to fold it a couple times to get it to form the shape you want.
Remove French oven from oven and place dough into the bottom. (Attention! Cast iron will be HOT!)
Bake for 30 mins with lid on, then remove lid and bake another 15-20 mins until bread is golden brown.
Remove from oven and allow to cool. Cut and serve!

Too. Much. Yum. Enough said.

You’re ready to host the soup party to end all soup parties!

Kay is a feature, blog and copywriter. She collects empty jam jars, academic degrees and tawdry dreams in the hopes of turning them into something useful someday. Her work has been published in ACP magazines, ABC fiction, Overland, Brittle Star, Seizure, trade publications and online forums. Her creative writing has won several awards.