Roasted Sweet Potato and Parsnip Soup

onion, chives, frugal, thrifty

I am not a vegan by any stretch of even the most delusional lunatic’s imagination. It’s difficult to admit it to you guys, but I covet all things animal. However, it would be unfair to describe me as an ‘average meat eater’ – meat finds its sordid way onto my menu once, maybe twice, per week. After all, meat can be both healthy and expensive; my diet naturally contains a good proportion of vegan and vegetarian food. It seems to me amongst the various communities of meat eaters there is a lot of negativity directed towards veganism. Though it is often true that I don’t entirely agree or understand why people ‘turn’ vegan, you won’t encounter any such negativity here. I’m perfectly cognisant of the fact vegan food can taste just as good as that which contains meat or dairy, sometimes more so. Indeed, I feel privileged to be, for the first time, part of the Virtual Vegan Potluck.

Traditionally, parsnip is a vegetable the male members of my family struggle to get along with – my dad certainly won’t eat them. Put a roast parsnip in front of me and you’ll be more likely to encounter a torrent of abuse than a gastronomically fuelled embrace. However, when incorporated into soup, my opinion of the humble parsnip changes entirely – they are no longer an odd tasting root-vegetable; they become something far sweeter with a considerable depth of flavour. It is for this reason that I paired them with sweet potatoes, a combination that seemed to work exceedingly well. The addition of freshly chopped chives then had the privilege of taking this soup to the next level, providing the freshness root-vegetable soups often require.

So, there you have it – my first VVP post and hopefully not my last! I hope everything was to everyone’s satisfaction, perhaps this experience will provide even great impetus to create more vegan delights. Thank you to Somer for successfully convincing me that this was a good idea. Do enjoy the next link in the chain that makes up the Virtual Vegan Potluck!

P.S. I’m so sorry for the fact I’ve managed to post two sweet potato recipes in a row – silly Frugal!

Roasted Sweet Potato and Parsnip Soup

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

• 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced

• 2 parsnips, peeled and diced

• 1 onion, roughly chopped

• 4 cloves of garlic

• 1 litre vegetable stock or bouillon

• A handful of fresh chives, finely chopped

• Salt and pepper

• Olive oil

Method:

1. Prepare your ingredients and pop them on a baking tray with a good drizzle of olive oil, a generous pinch of salt and a hefty twist of black pepper. Pop in the oven and bake until brown.

2. Set the roasted vegetables aside and heat a little oil in a saucepan. Squeeze the innards of the roasted garlic cloves into the oil and fry gently for 2 minutes. Tip in the rest of the veg and add 800ml of the stock. Depending on your personal taste you may like to add the remaining 200ml, or even more, but that’s up to you.

3. Blend the soup using either a food processor or hand blender. Season to taste and serve immediately with fresh chives and a hunk of bread.

Cost: True vegan food does tend to be exceedingly cheap and it’s simple to see why – it’s hard for it to contain anything particularly expensive. Of course, a knob of butter would have gone down well, but I thought I’d remain entirely within the spirit of things. This soup should set one back no more than £1.80 – bargain!

So, who came before and who came after? Well, click on these images below to find out!

202 thoughts on “Roasted Sweet Potato and Parsnip Soup

  1. Somer

    Frugal, literally grinning throughout! This soup totally shines. And I for one adore the humble parsnip, but you’ve made it even better by combining it with the sweet potato and roasting them both. Incredible. So glad you came to the party, it wouldn’t have been the same without this! :) :) :)

  2. Natalie Ward

    Gorgoeus looking soup, I’m not a parsnip fan generally either and have a hard time not putting sweet potato in everything at the moment, so don’t apologise! By the way is it just my sick mind or had you noticed the Virtually Vegan Pot Luck V VPL connection too? Nope just me then sorry, made me laugh anyway!! ;D

  3. narf77

    ROTFL! Somer isn’t going to like being called a “delusional lunatic” you know! ;). I went vegan because I didn’t want to spend the rest of my gluttonous life weighing 250lb. I worked out that portion size was my killer and I wasn’t fussy about what I ate, just how much, so I went vegan (way back 20 years ago!), lost a lot of weight and STILL got to eat as much as I like whilst gaining health and an entirely new life :) I learned along the way that vegan food isn’t tasteless lentil filled chew fests. I presented our Diploma of Landscape Design lecturer with a vegan chocolate cake at our last meeting and over morning tea and excellent coffee he pronounced it “the best bloody chocolate cake that I have ever eaten…” and almost fell off his chair when I told him that it was vegan…he decided to take the rest of it home with him to share with his family and amaze them. Vegan aint taste free any more folks! For whatever reason people decide to go vegan (and there are many…) there is an excellent community of us out here all sharing amazing recipes with anyone who cares and this is one such amazing recipe. Try using parsnips in cakes as well…amazing peppery sweet little muffins…em! Cheers for this vegan potluck recipe and when I am next in town I am going to the green grocers to pick up some parsnips to get my parsnipy soup groove on :)

    1. frugalfeeding

      Haha, totally wasn’t aimed at her :D. Ah, well you see, I’m not quite that heavy, so I’ll stick to the meat :D. I have cut it out quite a lot though and it does help! Great story about the chocolate cake – it certainly proves a thing or two to the doubters! I’m glad it has inspired you.

      1. narf77

        As mentioned, people go vegan for a myriad of reasons. Steve eats meat and we kill our own chooks (roosters) and he eats them. I just remember that scientific study about men eating soup a day a week living longer than men who don’t and think that there has to be something in it :). I know that your comment wasn’t aimed at her and I know that the girls are chipping away at you and I consider myself duly chastened but my sense of humour tends to the Australian and we are a sardonic bunch ;)

          1. narf77

            Soup is delicious, nutritious and frugal and is something that we ate a lot as children. Mum used to make bone stock and we all loved the resulting soups that she made. We have learned to make some amazing vegan soup and Steve is the soup maestro. We call him “The Soup Dragon” ;)

          2. narf77

            I can’t justify the use of the bones from the butchers for stock with 2 sets of enormous brown eyes watching me from medium dog height waiting for the spoils…oh well…at least someone likes the bones ;)

  4. erika

    Funny thing. I went forward to your post only semi paying attention and my eyes went straight to the photo. Mmmm. That looks good. What a great photo! Looks like frugal feedings masterful eye…. hey wait! It is!

  5. tonette joyce

    This is very nice; I need to try it.Your feelings on vegan/animal foods sounds like me.
    I ‘discovered’ roasted root vegetables last year and have a recipe,
    (featuring sweet potatoes and parsnips) for them en crout on my blog;(September Archives).

    1. frugalfeeding

      Well, I take exception to your comment that the animals I eat are tortured… If meat is well sourced there are fairly stringent rules dictating methods behind the farming and slaughter of animals. I think that it’s very dangerous to generalise the treatment of animals across the board. In my experience, rather a lot of farmers genuinely adore and care for the animals they keep, but manage to maintain the distinction between pet and farmed animal. Also, if that is the case, then why don’t people simply give up unethically sourced meat. For instance, according to that line of thought keeping your own chickens and taking their eggs should be fine; in the case of my chickens they had a very good life. If an animal hasn’t been mistreated and has had a genuinely good life, what then is the argument? Also, if someone wants to explain to me the idea behind why vegans can’t eat honey, I’d be very appreciative.

      In any case, I’m glad you like the look of my soup.

      1. K-bobo @ Gormandize with A-dizzle & K-bobo

        I’m sure there may be some places which treat animals nicely, but how can I know that without going out to look at all the farms and slaughterhouses? I can’t, so to be sure that I’m not supporting animal cruelty I just don’t buy any of it.

        I’m sure your chickens are very happy and fine. However, because the demand for hens is high (both from farmers and people who wish to keep their own chickens), millions of male baby chicks are killed in a high speed grinder because they are deemed to be of no use to the egg industry. I personally don’t support this.

        This is why vegans don’t eat honey: http://www.peta.org/issues/Animals-Used-for-Food/honey-from-factory-farmed-bees.aspx

        1. frugalfeeding

          Read legislation and ask the butcher where the meat comes from – not everyone is lying to you. I think it’s a little unfair to base your knowledge in videos or articles designed to aggravate – it’s simply propaganda.

          Why not purchase your chicks from a reputed supplier of free range chicks – one that definitely wouldn’t cause them any harm. I don’t understand the argument that by using meat produce in any way, be it maltreated or cared for, supports the negative side of the meat industry. It simply doesn’t. There are places where you can pick up ex-battery hens that still produce good eggs – surely that’s actually beneficial to the animal?

          The same goes for honey.

      2. K-bobo @ Gormandize with A-dizzle & K-bobo

        I’m not saying that purchasing any meats supports the negative side of the meat industry, I’m just saying that without knowing what conditions animals have been kept in and slaughtered in I wouldn’t be comfortable purchasing any meat. You can talk to your butcher, but I’m pretty sure he wants to sell me his meat, so I’m not sure if his idea of treating animals humanely is the same idea as mine. Many people thing it’s fine to give cows electric shocks in the slaughterhouse, I personally don’t.

        As for purchasing free range chicks, that makes no difference to the fact that the male chicks get killed because there is no demand for them. It’s great that you can buy ex battery hens, although sad that people would only want them if they “still produce good eggs”.

        I’m not really sure why you “take exception” to my views and my eating choices. I’m not trying to influence yours, I’m just telling you my point of view because you asked.

        1. frugalfeeding

          I’ve definitely never said I take exception to the fact you’re a vegan – my post explicitly says I haven’t a problem with it…

          Other than that I’m not going to reply to the rest of what you’ve just said – I’m a meat eater, I source my meat correctly and I enjoy it infrequently as I believe all meat eaters should.

  6. Tina Robson

    Made your soup today, tastes great. Warming and very filling. Made my cheeks glow as I ate it. I forgot to get a vegetable stock cube, so I par boiled the sweet potato and parsnip to get a little fresh vegetable stock. Worked out really well.

  7. Allison

    This looks fabulous! I don’t think I’d ever tasted a parsnip until last year, but I have to say they are incredibly tasty when roasted. And sweet potatoes are the ultimate comfort food, too.

    Absolutely gorgeous photos! :)

      1. Allison

        Having only eaten parsnips roasted up in combination with other vegetables, I’d probably have to a agree… :) They do have a surprisingly nice, soft texture though, even if their flavor is a little bland.

  8. Granny

    It is one of those nights here, as I read this, when one cannot manage to get warm. Yet it is really not all that cold; just the early autumn chill I suppose. However, I felt warm the moment I saw the title of this post. Thank you very much. Simple, delicious common sense as usual. Enjoy the Virtual Vegan Potluck. One question: Not your usual tabletop. New?

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  10. nburgart

    I too love parsnip in a soup. A couple weeks back I made a sweet potato, parsnip and apple soup. It was fabulous. Can’t wait to try yours sometime. Thanks.

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  12. dinnersforwinners

    This sounds wonderful! Frugal recipes are right up my alley with my recent unemployment :) I made a potato-leek soup last week — it was good, but this sounds much more autumnal and comforting! I adore parsnips. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Kimby

    Your soup would definitely take the chill out of a fall evening, especially with the lively discussion that comes with it. :) Enjoyed your post and the comment section!

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  15. Ali Morris

    This sounds AMAZING! And so SIMPLE! I love a simple recipe of 6 ingredients or less and coming in at 5 ingredients this recipe is a treat. You have also appealed to my restrictive diet of wheat-free, dairy-free, tomato-free and sugar-free without even meaning to – I love stumbling across recipes like this, vegan recipe’s always seem to work well for funny people like me, and it makes us feel more normal so thanks for sharing! :)

    Also, thanks for liking my post “product review: ezyprotein plus smoothie recipe, also vegan”, that it is what lead me here to read this wonderful recipe!

    Another note I’d like to pop in for you on a plus after reading a few comments is I work at an abattoir in australia that processes beef (“beef processing facility” is the new PC term) and I know where my beef comes from and Australia has some of the strictest, most humanitarian rules in the world for how the animals are cared for from the feedlot right up until their last moments, enormous care (for animals) and harsh consequences (for humans) are given when these rights are not respected, and a stressed animal actually leads to a poor final product (as a note from another point of view). I love eating vegan foods, mostly because 1) they taste great 2) they don’t affect my asthma and allergies. thanks for sharing :) p.s sorry for the gigantic comment!

    1. frugalfeeding

      Awesome!No problem – I’m glad I could be of service :). I love using as few ingredients as possible. Thanks for backing me up :). It was a great comment, thanks. I feel that if meat is well sourced, there’s absolutely no problem in eating it.

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  17. woodentaste

    Congratulations on your true professional-passionate-delightful-scrumptious-enticing work…we are using this-more or less-enchanting veggie -the parsnip…constantly…and YES,I could not agree more:less is more(less ingredients as possible)…A kosher zest to read your pages…

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  20. Big Al

    Thanks for liking my Post! You have an amazing blog and are clearly a dab hand at photography, All your recipes look lush, this soup looks smashing.

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  22. VogueVegetarian

    I made this last night and it is delicious! I only had 2 sweet potatoes but they were huge so I think it yielded about what 3 normal sized ones would. I also added a 1/2 tsp cinnamon, a couple more cloves of garlic and extra black pepper to finish. Super good-thanks for giving me a yummy way to use parsnips! I’ll be making this again!

  23. apocalyptophilia

    I’m with you on the carnivore/vegetarian issue – I’ll eat any vegetarian or even vegan food that is tasty, though when I make it at home I often slide a bit of butter, egg or cream into a dish that I feel needs it! I’ve never tried parsnips, but this looks so delicious that I’m off to the market to get some in order to make a batch tonight. If nothing else, I am always in favor of well-roasted veggies. Cheers!

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  29. Maria

    Oh, my! This is the best new soup I had in ages! I had to make a couple of adjustments due to my stock at home; I replaced the onion by asafoetida and I used extra virgin coconut oil instead of olive oil to roast, and I added parsley instead of chives. Mindblowing. Thanks for posting!

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