Ok, this is maybe not the most exciting dish, but it’s extremely comforting and has a great depth of flavor. It’s a very traditional thing to make, all year round, with the vegetables adapted according to the season. I must have eaten this a thousand times growing up but I still like it and should actually make it more often. It’s so healthy – filling but super light at the same time. The base is always the same: vegetable stock made from a bunch of stuff we call Suppengrün – carrots, an onion, a leek, celery root, celery leaves and parsley root. After that, it’s all optional and you can throw in whatever you have. It’s a perfect way to use up those leftover vegetables sitting in the fridge, too!
Ingredients (three to four bowls):
For the stock:
One onion – cleaned but unpeeled
Half of a celery root, well cleaned
A few celery leaves
One leek, cleaned
Two small parsley root (or a bunch of fresh parsley, if not available)
Two dried bay leaves
For the soup:
One tablespoon of olive oil
Three cloves of garlic, diced
A pinch of dried herbs, such as oregano, rosemary or sage
One small squash, peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces
Two carrots, peeled and cut into slices
One bulb of fennel, cleaned and chopped
One small kohlrabi, peeled and chopped
One lemon or lime
Salt and pepper
A handful of fresh herbs
For the stock, bring one and a half liters of water to a boil. Roughly chop up the carrots, celery root, leek and parsley roots. Cut one onion in half – with the peel, it will give a nice color to your broth. Throw everything plus the bay leaves in the boiling water, lower the heat and let it simmer for an hour. Afterwards, strain the broth into a bowl or other container, pressing the vegetable pieces through a sieve to get all the flavor.
Heat up the oil in a large pot and add the diced garlic and the dried herbs. Fry them for a minute or so, then add the fennel, kohlrabi, carrot and squash, or whichever vegetables you are using. Stir everything well. After two or three minutes, add about one liter of the stock (if you have more, keep it in the fridge or freezer for later use). When the soup starts boiling, lower the heat so it simmers. After twenty minutes, the vegetables should be soft and the soup ready to serve. Season generously with salt and pepper and add a little lemon juice. Sprinkle the fresh herbs on top. Enjoy!