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Smoky beetroot soup

By March 01, 2016 , , ,

There's a lot more to beetroot than the ubiquitous pickled version that many of us grew up with. This soup has been a favourite chez Kitchen Exile for many years now. I find that slow roasting the beetroot and smoking it on the barbecue intensifies the flavour, the smokiness adds a n extra depth. 

4 medium sized beetroot peeled and roughly chopped
1 carrot peeled and roughly chopped
1 leek chopped
1 onion roughly chopped
1 stick celery roughly chopped
1 large potato thinly sliced
2l beef or veg stock
2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
1 heaped teaspoon smoked paprika (if not smoking the beetroot on the BBQ)
1 tablespoon tomato purée
Oil for frying
Salt and pepper to taste

To smoke the beetroot
You could lessen the amount of smoked paprika in the ingredients and hot smoke the beetroot with oak or apple chips at 140c (indirect heat) for 75 mins
Once smoked remove the beetroot from the barbecue and allow the flavour to settle for a few hours before making the soup

Fry off the carrot, celery, onion and leek in the oil on a medium heat until soft
Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes
Next add the smoked paprika and tomato purée and cook out for 5 minutes
Add the beetroot and potato and pour in the stock
Bring the soup to the boil and then simmer on a medium heat for 30 minutes
Allow the mixture to cool a little before whizzing in a blender 
If you want an extra smooth textured soup you can pass it through a sieve
Return to the pan and season with the lemon juice, salt and pepper
I like to serve this with a dollop of creme fraiche mixed with grated fresh horseradish

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