This soup is a house favorite, the one I make two Sundays each month. You can keep it pareve by leaving out the garnish.

4 large parsnips, chopped intochunks
3 sweet potatoes, cut into large cubes
1 pint sliced mushrooms (button or Portabello)
1 fennel, chopped into large chunks
1 extra-large onion, chopped into chunks
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
5-6 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons each of oregano, basil, cumin, garlic, parsley, salt, black pepper
6-8 cups water

For Garnish
1 package Facon or beef fry strips
1 large parsnip, peeled into thin strips
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. In a large bowl or on your baking sheet, toss together all vegetables with olive oil, garlic, and spices. Lay them flat and spread out as much as possible on the baking sheet. Bake for 40 minutes or until all vegetables are soft.
  2. Add hot vegetables, with all their juices, to a large soup pot with 3 cups of water. Using a hand blender, blend the roasted veggies until smooth (I like to leave it a little chunky). Add remaining water and bring to a simmer.
  3. Prepare the garnish. In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, cook Facon slices until crisp. Remove Facon from pan and drain on paper towels.
  4. In the same pan with the Facon drippings, add vegetable oil. When the oil is super-hot, slowly add parsnip slices to the pan, making sure not to overcrowd them. Fry parsnips until slightly brown and crispy (about 3 to 4 minutes). Remove and drain on paper towels. When ready to serve, ladle soup into bowls and garnish with Facon and parsnip crisps.


Yield: 6 to 8 servings



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