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carrot and leek soup with miso, marjoram and rangpur lime

Carrot and leek soup is a bowl of sunshine in winter, specifically for dinner on a rainy gray January evening.  A bight flavored easy to make carrot soup embellished with a spoonful of mellow miso, a dusting of Rangpur lime zest with freshly snipped marjoram minced over warm creamy tops with a sprinkle of fleur de sel, reminding me of warmer al fresco dinners in the south of France.  This is the first installment of my soup and wine blog series.  I'm starting with a light but tasty winter soup, a soup that goes well with wine.  We start our soup and wine night by greeting guests with a Kir Royale, made with French champagne Laurent-Perrier and a spoonful of Crème de Cassis served in a flute.  I like to serve cheesy gougères from my blog to nibble, followed by a glass of Williams Selyem "Estate Vineyard" Russian River Valley Chardonnay to accompany our carrot and leek soup with miso, lime and marjoram.  A fun evening was had by all.  I also made fudgy chocolate brownies with toasted walnuts for dessert, but that simple fun recipe is for another blog post.

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 bunch carrots, about 6, peeled and sliced
3 medium leeks, white parts only, sliced in half and rinsed in water before slicing 
4 cups vegetable broth, plus 2 cups water to thin soup as needed
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons yellow miso
Small limes, like Rangpur, for juice and zest on top
Fresh marjoram, minced for sprinkling on top
Fleur de Sel for sprinkling on top

Melt the butter in a soup pot, when the butter sizzles add both sliced leeks and carrots.  Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Stir the carrots and leeks to coat with butter, continue to sauté for several minutes then add 4 cups of vegetable broth.  Simmer soup, adding water if necessary to cover the vegetables, until carrots are tender, about 30 minutes.
Cool the soup and purée with a stick blender, adding water as needed, thinning  to desired consistency.  I like my purée on the thicker side.  Reheat the soup before serving and stir in the miso.
Serve the soup in small bowls with grated lime, drizzle of fresh lime juice, sprinkles of minced marjoram and Fleur de Sel.


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