Cream of Celery Soup…An Exercise in Better Uses for Celery.


Celery…conjuring memories of low-fat diets since the 1980’s. Relegated to the crudite platter.


Ahhh…FANCY ants on a log. You can do better celery. You can do better. (Pic snagged from Pinterest).

Such a sad existence. Now, I’m not telling you to spearhead some sort of Celery Festival equipped with it’s own Celery Queen riding astride a large green float and waving wistfully to the crowd. What I am saying is you should give celery a second try…just not in the form you’re familiar with. Paired with some really good butter and a whole lotta cream your ol’ standby celery can go from the dark, lonely corners of the vegetable bin to something pretty fabulous. I stumbled upon cream of celery soup (no, not the red-and-white canned kind) when I was trying to use up a couple of bunches of celery that were going nowhere fast. It was chilly at the time and a big ol’ bowl of soup sounded pretty delightful. Peering into my generally packed-to-the-hilt fridge, I found a motley crew of a stick of butter, a pint of cream, our sad celery, and some chicken stock.  With a serious case of the lazies, I donned my kitchen apron over my PJs and got to work.  A little saute with some bits of onion in a few tablespoons of butter, simmered in chicken stock, pureed, and topped off with cream—winner! Best news is it is packed with nutrients and no flour is required to thicken the soup (feel free to roll with a classic roux, but I really prefer it without). The good portion of fat keeps you full too (ahem–not to mention it tastes ah-mazing!). Tonight this little beauty serves as a starter to our pre-hurricaine dinner. No better time to clear out the far reaches of the fridge!

Cream of Celery Soup

  • 2 bunches of celery (about 350g)
  • 1/2 small onion (about 50g)
  • 1.5 cups chicken stock
  • 0.5 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • salt to taste
  • peppercorn melange to taste (black pepper works well too)

Roughly chop the celery and onions while melting the butter in a large saute pan. After the butter is finished foaming, place the celery and onions in and saute until beginning to soften. Add 1.5 cups of chicken stock and the bay leaf and simmer until all bits are cooked through and soft. Remove the bay leaf, remove the pan from the heat, and cool a bit. Process until smooth in a heavy duty blender (like a Vitamix!). Return the soup to your pan and slowly stir in the heavy cream. Add a small amount of water or cook off a little liquid to perfect the consistency (since we didn’t use a roux as a thickener). Adjust seasonings.

You can certainly strain the small bits of celery fiber through a fine strainer (like a bouillon strainer or fine chinois cap), but most of the time I prefer to leave them in for a little heft. A super smooth, strained soup does however, make a nice accoutrement to a fine dinner. Add a drizzle of chive or parsley oil for an added punch of flavor and a little color. And just like that, your sad and lonely celery becomes a star!




White Onion Soup


Search ‘onion soup recipes’ and you’ll find almost 6 million results…nearly all of them concerned with the French onion soup we’ve all grown to love. If the beefy, buttery, cheese-and-crouton soup is peasant food, then white onion soup is it’s long-lost, classy cousin. The two are in no way similar other than being soup and having a base of onions. The classic French onion soup calls for caramelized onions and beef broth while white onion soup calls for softened onions and cream. One is deep brown in color while the other is a pristine snow white palate. As far as flavor, white onion soup does taste of onions (obviously) but not overwhelmingly so while floral notes peak through a creamy, buttery base. It’s divine. And simple. Just a handful of ingredients are required to create a truly delightful bowl of soup. It’s a great meal on it’s own, paired with a salad, or as a starter for beef, lamb, and pork meals.  Along with cream of celery, it’s one of my ‘go to’ soups. Even if you’re not crazy about onions, give white onion soup a try (just get those tissues ready–it’s a pile of onion to cut!).


I couldn’t help it!

White Onion Soup

  • 4 TBSP butter
  • 3 pounds of onions, sliced
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced
  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 2 TBSP grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt to taste

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat.  When the butter’s foam subsides, add the celery and cook until it begins to soften, a few minutes. Add the onion and cook until translucent and soft, about 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium low and continue to cook the onions until they are very soft, stirring frequently, about 20 minutes.


The onions need to be very soft, but don’t let them brown.

Do not let the onion brown. Add the chicken stock and process in small batches in a blender until smooth (if you are using a regular blender, this may take 2-4 minutes per batch). Return the soup to the pot and add white pepper and cream. Heat thoroughly. Add 2 TBSP of parmesean. Salt to taste.


This soup is so good on it’s own that you don’t need many accouterments.  A little chive oil and peppercorn melange suits just fine. 


Roasted walnut oil, roasted beets, and red onion jam fit nicely too. Golden crunchy potato strings or cheesy croutons and white truffle oil would work as well.

My favorite additions are a dotting of chive oil and a sprinkling of peppercorn melange. We’ve also tried walnut oil, roasted beets, and red onion jam.  I’m itching to try some crunchy potato strings or cheesy croutons and white truffle oil.


Nutrition per 8 oz. cup: Cal 212 kcal, Fat 15.1g, Sat Fat 9.7g, Chol 44.4mg, Carb 15.1g, Fiber 2.6g, Sugar 7.2g,  Protein 5.3g

Onions have higher levels of tryptophan, B vitamins and vitamins A and C, copper, manganese, and phosphorus. Onions are a prebiotic and are high in polyphenols, expecially flavanoids like quercetin.


Roasted Cauliflower Soup with White Truffle Oil


I don’t remember where I first came across roasted cauliflower soup.  What I do remember is that I fell in love immediately.  I was never a big fan of cauliflower as it was most often either tasteless, waterlogged, or overly sulfurous.  Roasted cauliflower, however, is divine. It’s addictive.  Once I roasted a head of florets and served them with browned butter–nary a crumb left within minutes.  Roasted cauliflower soup is more substantial than a boiled and pureed cauliflower soup, it feels richer, has more depth, and has a little nutty hint.  A few drops of white truffle oil make it transcendent.  And the beauty is it really is quite simple to make.  You can opt to add cream or leave it out if you’re dairy-free, lactose-intolerant, or non-dairy paleo.  I do love the cream, and it’s just a wee bit per bowl, but the soup tastes good without it, too.  Plus, cauliflower is a powerhouse nutritionally and touts detoxification, cardiovascular, digestive, and anti-inflammatory benefits.  Win! Win!

Roasted Cauliflower Soup with White Truffle Oil (makes about 6 cups)

For the Roasted Cauliflower:

  • 1 head of cauliflower, washed, air-dried and broken into florets
  • 1 TBSP Light Tasting Olive Oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the soup:

  • 6 cups filtered water
  • 1/2 sweet potato (not yam), peeled and cubed
  • 2 tsp organic paste chicken bouillon (alternatively, use 3 cups water and 3 cups stock instead of 6 cups of filtered water)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • White truffle oil
  • parsley for garnish

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Place florets on a parchment-lined, rimmed baking sheet.  Drizzle with olive oil and season with garlic, salt, and pepper.  Toss gently to cover.  Place baking sheet on the middle rack and roast for 20 minutes.  Turn cauliflower with tongs or spatula and roast 20 minutes longer or until cauliflower becomes golden brown on edges and becomes slightly more translucent but stalks remain slightly firm.

Roasted Cauliflower

Lovely roasted cauliflower.

Place florets in stock pot over medium-high and cover with water (about 6 cups).  Add sweet potato, paste bouillon, garlic, and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer. Simmer until cauliflower is thoroughly cooked and tender, about 20 minutes.  Once tender, puree small batches of the cauliflower soup in a blender until silky smooth (about 2 minutes per batch).  Return to stock pot over low heat. Whisk in heavy cream. Ladle into bowls and garnish with drops of white truffle oil (a tiny amount goes a LONG way!) and parsley.

Cauliflower Soup

Roasted cauliflower soup with white truffle oil and parsley. Too tasty!

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

An alternative garnish–browned butter, roasted florets, and bits of smokey bacon. This is a great winter addition that packs some real satisfaction!