Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Celery Soup with Caramelized Apples

Almost a year ago I was introduced to an awesome thing called Bountiful Baskets.  Have you heard of them?  It's wonderful!  Click the link above if you haven't heard about them.  You get fresh produce at a fraction of the price you would pay for it at the store.  I LOVE it!!!

So what does Bountiful Baskets have to do with celery soup?  Well, one week I received two bags of celery.  I'm not a big celery eater, in fact I really don't like it at all.  The texture is not appealing to me.  Usually the only way I will eat it is with peanut butter on it, and even then I'm forcing myself to finish it.  When I received the two bags of celery I was a little disappointed, I really assumed it would go to waste, especially without my hubby here to help eat it.  But then I stumbled onto a recipe for soup, celery soup!  I figured it was worth it to give it a try since either way it would go to waste, either with me not eating it or me using it to make soup and then not liking it.  Surprisingly enough it was so GOOD!  It must've been the pears and the apples that were added to it, or maybe it because I just don't like the text of celery, whatever the reason, this soup was really wonderful!

Celery Soup w/Caramelized Apples (& Pears)
adapted from MyRecipes

1 head (approx 1.5 lbs) of celery
1/2 small onion, chopped
4 cups chicken stock
2 tablespoons butter
2 apples, diced
1 pear, diced
1/2 cup heavy cream
salt and pepper to taste
crumbled blue cheese

1. Peel fibers from celery.  Cut celery into 1-in chunks.  In a large pot, boil celery and onion with broth, covered, until tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a medium frying pan over medium heat.  Cook apples and pear, stirring occasionally, until caramelized, about 10 minutes.  Set aside, separating out 1/4 cup for garnish. 
3. Working in batches, ladle celery mixture and caramelized apples/pears into a blender wand whirl until very smooth, about 2 minutes per batch.  Stir in heavy cream and season with salt and pepper.  
4.  Ladle soup into bowls and top with blue cheese crumbles and reserved caramelized apple/pears.

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