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Jamaican Carrot Soup

Ingredients

SOUP

  • Five tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 2 pounds of carrots, thinly sliced
  • One large, thinly sliced onion
  • Freshly ground salt and pepper
  • Four large scallions thinly sliced
  • 14 to 1/2 Scotch Bonnet Chile, seeds removed and thinly sliced
  • One teaspoon of soy sauce
  • One teaspoon of chopped thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated Nutmeg
  • 6 cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
  • One small red potato, thinly sliced
  • One bay leaf
  • One tablespoon of fresh lemon juice

PEAR RELISH

  • 4 Bartlett pears, firm and ripe, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • Four teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated Nutmeg

PLANTAIN CHIPS

  • One large ripe plantain
  • Vegetable Oil for Frying
  • Salt

Directions

  1. Melt butter in a heavy, large saucepan. Add the onion and carrots, and season with pepper and salt. Stirring occasionally, cook the vegetables at a moderately low temperature for about 30 minutes. Stir in the Scotch Bonnet, scallions, and ginger. Add soy sauce and cumin. Bring the stock, bay leaf, and potato to a rolling boil. Cover the pot and simmer on low heat for about 25 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
  2. Remove the bay leaf and allow the soup to stand for 10 minutes. Blend the soup in batches and then return it to the pan. Add the salt, pepper, and lemon juice to the soup.
  3. Toss pears in a bowl with lemon juice. Fold in parsley, nuNutmegnd allspice. Refrigerate the relish.
  4. Peel the plantain, and then thinly slice on the diagonal. Heat 1/4 inch of oil in a large pan until it shimmers. Fry the half of plantain slices over a moderate heat for about 2 minutes on each side. While you fry the remainder, drain on paper towels just before serving and season with salt.
  5. Reheat soup. Pour into shallow bowls, and top with cold pear relish. Serve with a plantain chip.
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