Three truths about this soup:
- It isn’t the prettiest soup on the block. It’s beige at its best, and greyish at its worst. That’s one reason I like to throw some roasted yams on top — in addition to being super tasty, they liven things up like a disco ball in a middle-school gym. Joy the Baker, the source of the original recipe, used purple potatoes to the same effect. Whatever you choose as a garnish (fresh parsley and crumbled goat cheese? broiled cheddar lids?), be sure it’s bright and attractive.
- While the roasting process turns garlic from a zippy, pungent bulb into a deep, velvety flavor vehicle, it’s still recognizably garlicky. So, maybe steer clear of this soup before job interviews and meeting future in-laws. Save it for a dark, rainy day when you’re home with the flu — or else a group of adventurous dinner guests.
- It’s a seriously good soup. I believe I already used the word velvety, so let’s try … silky. Warming. Full-flavoured. Comforting. It’ll win over guests in no time — and earn you instant admiration points when you reveal how much garlic it contains.
Roasted garlic soup with rosemary yams
(Adapted from Joy the Baker’s recipe)
- 25–35 unpeeled cloves of garlic (divided)
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 2 medium onions, sliced into half-moons
- 2 Yukon Gold potatoes, diced
- 2 tsp. thyme
- 6 c. chicken broth
- 4 T. lemon juice
- ¾ c. plain yogurt (can also substitute milk, whipping cream, or sour cream)
- grated Parmesan
- 3–4 yams, cut into bite-sized chunks
- 1 T. dried rosemary, crushed
- Place 20–25 unpeeled garlic cloves in oven-proof dish. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Roast garlic at 450°F for about 20 minutes, or until soft.
- Remove garlic from oven, let cool a few minutes, then pop garlic out of skins. Throw away skins and set garlic aside.
- Heat 2 T. olive oil in stock pot over medium-low heat. Add onions, Yukon Golds, thyme, and 5–10 raw unpeeled garlic cloves. Cook until onions are translucent.
- Add broth and peeled roasted garlic. Raise heat to medium-high.
- Simmer until potatoes and raw garlic are tender.
- Toss diced yams with olive oil and rosemary. Roast at 450°F for about 30 minutes, or until tender.
- Purée soup in batches and return to pot. Add yogurt and lemon juice, and stir to incorporate.
- Scoop soup into bowls. Top with roasted yams and Parmesan. Swirl in extra lemon juice, plain yogurt, and/or extra virgin olive oil if desired.
- Boil and drain 1/2 c. cannellini or Great Northern beans. Add to soup before puréeing for extra protein.
- Replace Yukon Gold potatoes in soup with yams for a brighter colour.
- Dice onions instead of slicing, and purée only half of the soup for a chunkier texture. Stir in 1 c. shredded chicken before serving.