Roasted Carrot, Ginger and Turmeric Soup with Crispy Chickpeas
Recipe, words & images by Harriet Davidson
The topping is just as important as the soup itself in this recipe and once you start loading your soups, it’s hard to turn back. Similar to a bowl of morning porridge, there’s something almost meditative about building your bowl when it’s all ready – placing each dollop, each sprinkle, each drizzle in just the right spot before you sit down to warm yourself from within.
This recipe is all about contrasts. The texture contrast between the velvety soup and the crunchy, crispy chickpeas and roasted almonds. The sweet-salty contrast between the spiced soup and roasted carrots with the honey drizzle and salt sprinkle. The contrast of the rich tahini drizzle and fresh herbs.
The flavours of honey and ginger-roasted carrots take me back to Sunday roasts as a child. Roasting the carrots before you add them to the pot gives the soup a nice richness. Try to pick up the carrots from your local farmer’s market – higher quality carrots will give you a sweeter, more nourishing soup. These beauties were plucked from the grounds of Coopers Growing farm the day I made the soup. The dream.
The flavours of honey and ginger-roasted carrots take me back to Sunday roasts as a child.
The crispy chickpeas are something I cook almost weekly. I top hummus with them, put them through salads, add them to all kinds of soups or just eat them on their own. You’ll notice a big difference if you use chickpeas you’ve prepared but the beauty of these is that they’re wildly simple and make bowls far more exciting so sometimes you just need to reach for that tin.
The loading is completely up to you. Don’t have almonds? Use walnuts. No nigella seeds? Use sesame seeds. Been eating too many chickpeas? Get the crunch from topping the soup with kale chips. Have a play, do as you please, just make sure there’s crunch and contrast in there.
The loading is completely up to you. Don’t have almonds? Use walnuts. No nigella seeds? Use sesame seeds.
Serve the soup with a great loaf of fresh sourdough to tear from or make yoghurt flatbreads to wipe your bowl out with at the end. If you have leftover roasted carrots, pop them on the table too – they’re a treat to dip into the soup.
Roasted and spiced carrot, ginger and turmeric soup (serves four)
1kg carrots (about 8)
4 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp honey
8 cm piece ginger
2 garlic cloves
3cm piece fresh turmeric (or 2 tsp ground)
2 tsp caraway seeds
Salt and pepper
400ml coconut milk (or one tin)
1 tbsp tahini
400g chickpeas (or one tin)
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
Greek or coconut yoghurt
Fresh herbs (parsley, mint, coriander, dill all work well)
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 180C. Cut carrots in half length ways and place on a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil, honey, 2 teaspoons ground cumin, sea salt and a 4cm piece of grated ginger. Place in oven for 30-40 minutes, or until soft and starting to caramelise.
Meanwhile, for the chickpeas, in a bowl combine all the spices and olive oil and mix to form a paste-like consistency. Add in chickpeas and stir to coat them in the spice mix. Pour these out on to a baking tray large enough for them not to be on top of each other. Use a spatula to get all of those lovely spices from the bowl onto the chickpeas. Place in the oven for 20 minutes with the carrots, or until chickpeas are crispy. Give both trays a shake halfway through cooking.
Once carrots are cooked, cut two-thirds of them into bite-sized pieces and set aside the remaining for topping the soup. Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and add in diced onion and grated garlic and cook for 5 minutes, or until soft and translucent. Add in grated ginger, grated turmeric (or ground), caraway seeds and the remaining 2 teaspoons of ground cumin and stir for 2 minutes until fragrant. Stir in carrots and coat with spices before mixing in coconut milk and tahini. Fill the can from the coconut milk with water and add this in – you’ll need two cans of water here, or 800ml. Bring to a simmer, add a pinch of salt and a good grind of pepper, cover and turn down to a low heat for 15 minutes to let the flavours meld.
Remove from heat and using a stick blender, blend the soup until velvety smooth. You might want to add in a touch of water here to loosen the soup depending on how thick you like it. Return to heat and have a taste. Add in a pinch of salt or another drizzle of tahini to adjust it to your liking.
To serve, ladle the soup into bowls, top with a dollop of yoghurt, remaining roasted carrots, a handful of crispy chickpeas, chopped almonds, nigella seeds and a drizzle of honey, tahini and olive oil. Finish with a handful of herbs, a pinch of salt and a good crack of pepper. Serve with fresh crunchy sourdough and salted butter.
Harriet’s table is set with an IN BED table cloth in natural and 100% linen napkin in pine green. Featured in this article are soup bowls and a salt dish by Kattleya Silang and a butter dish by Cisco and the Sun. All other props are Harriets own. Carrots, parsley and coriander from Coopers Growing