September 25, 2011

Parsnip Pear Soup

I've officially made my first soup of the Fall season! When the weather starts getting cooler, I love to bring home root vegetables from the market, roast them in the oven, then purée them into a delicious and comforting soup.

This soup was different than any I've ever made in the past.  It combines parsnips with pears, resulting in a unique, slightly sweet taste with a hint of spice. Parsnips are a pretty neutral-tasting vegetable on their own (similar to carrots), but in this recipe they are roasted first, which brings out a deeper, sweeter flavour that paired nicely with the pear.

This wasn't the prettiest soup I've ever made either - it looked more like ugly mashed potatoes than a smooth soup - but I still loved the taste of it!

As you can see in the photo below, my soup was also very thick, almost like a puree. I prefer thicker soups anyway, so this was fine with me, but if you like a thinner soup, you can add more liquid.

I wanted to serve this with some fresh bread, so I made some healthy three-seed biscuits to have with it (see photo above). They were the perfect accompaniment, and they were easy enough to put together in the same time as it took to make the soup! The recipe for these biscuits comes from Canadian Living: The Vegetarian Collection: Creative Meat-Free Dishes That Nourish and Inspire and was recommended to me by Ashley of Eat Me, Delicious. You can find the recipe on her blog here: Three-Seed Biscuits.

Parsnip Pear Soup
Adapted from Eat This, originally from The Perfect Pantry

1 lb parsnips, peeled and ends trimmed
1 yellow onion, peeled and quartered
2 cloves of garlic, unpeeled
1 pear, peeled and chopped
1.5 cups vegetable stock
1 tsp dried thyme
1/8 tsp allspice
salt and pepper
roasted pumpkin seeds for garnish (optional)

Place the parsnips, onion, and garlic on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven at 375°F for 30-40 minutes, until the parsnips are tender and lightly browned. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes. 

Once cooled, cut the parsnips into chunks and remove the garlic from its peel. Place the parsnips, garlic, onions, and pear in a large pot. Add the vegetable stock, thyme and allspice. Add more water if you need to, so that the veggies are almost covered.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 20 minutes. Remove from heat.

Blend soup in batches in a blender or food processor. Add more water if necessary to thin out the soup (I found that I needed to add a lot of water to get more of a soup-like consistency. I used at least 1 cup of water, and my soup was still very thick).

Season with additional salt and pepper and serve hot. Garnish with pumpkin seeds if desired.

Makes 3 servings.

This is my submission to Souper Sundays hosted by Deb at Kahakai Kitchen.


  1. Sometimes the soups that we think are not the prettiest are my favorites--I think it looks and sounds delicious. I need to cook more with parsnips and I love the idea of the pear.

    Thanks so much for sharing it with Souper Sundays. Welcome and I look forward to having you back again soon. ;-) The round up is posted. Hope you get a chance to stop by.



  2. @Deb in Hawaii

    Thanks again for posting the recipe! This is a great time of year to cook with parsnips - I even like them raw too!

  3. Now that's an interesting combination.



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