To market to market: curried carrot and turnip soup

Recipe and photography by Elise Copps-Smith, ArtSci ’11. Contributor

The Kingston Farmer’s Market is a great place to start if you’re looking for inspiration in the kitchen. Operating on Tuesdays and Saturdays in Kingston’s Market Square, and on Wednesdays outside of Stauffer Library, the market’s vendors offer fresh, seasonal produce. If you’re intent on buying local, ask sellers about where they buy or grow their products. The majority are cultivated nearby, which allows for the freshest and most environmentally friendly ingredients.

Kingston Market Square

Market Square

In honour of fall, I decided to opt for some earthy root vegetables. As the weather gets cooler, beets, turnip, carrots, parsnips, yams and potatoes continue to thrive. All of these make great hearty soups like the one below. Soups are the perfect fall meal, and can be prepared ahead of time, stored and reheated easily. For the novice chef, they are also very forgiving and can be tweaked to suit your preferences.

Market Options

Market Options


6 large carrots

1 large or 2 small turnip

1 large onion

3 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp curry powder

1 tsp cumin

2 litres chicken stock

2 cups buttermilk

Salt and pepper to taste

Sour cream (optional)

Raw Ingredients

Raw Ingredients


1 very large sharp knife

1 large bowl 1 large oven safe baking dish

1 large pot

1 ladle

2 large spoons Blender


1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Rinse carrots and roughly chop into 1 inch pieces. Since they will eventually be pureed, don’t worry about how they look. Just make sure that they are equally sized so they cook evenly.

2. Depending on the size of your turnip, this may be a challenge. Cut in in half, and remove the tough stubs from either end. You will see a thin ring around the outside of the turnip just under the skin. Carefully cut off this layer and discard. Roughly chop the remaining turnip into 1 inch chunks.

3. Place your carrot and turnip pieces into a large bowl and drizzle with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Sprinkle with curry powder and cumin, and a little salt. Depending on what you have around, these spices can be substituted, but I suggest sticking with eastern flavours. Toss until the vegetables are evenly coated with the spice mixture and pour into a baking dish. Place in the middle rack of the oven. Allow to roast for roughly 40 minutes, tossing occasionally. Don’t worry if the edges get a little dark, this will just add to the flavour of your soup.

4. While your vegetables are roasting, pour 1 tbsp of olive oil into a large pot over medium high heat, and dice your onion into ½ inch pieces. Once the oil is heated, throw the onion into the pot, and stir intermittently until it has browned. Remove the pot from heat.

Roasted Vegetables

Roasted Vegetables

5. Once cooked, dump roasted vegetables into pot on top of your browned onion and place over medium low heat. Pour chicken stock over vegetables and stir. Vegetable stock can be substituted for a vegan/vegetarian version of this dish. Cover the pot with a lid and simmer for ½ an hour.

6. This next part can get a little messy. Ladle the stock and vegetables into your blender. Only fill about 2/3 of the way and make sure that the stock almost covers the vegetables. Puree the mixture until smooth and pour it into a bowl. You will likely have to repeat this 3 or 4 times depending on the size of your blender. If you have one, a submersion blender can also be used.

7. Once all of the soup is pureed, return it to the pot and add 2 cups of buttermilk. If you prefer it can be substituted for more stock, but I think that the sour flavour cuts the heat of the soup nicely. Give your soup a try and add more salt or spice to your taste. Ladle into bowls or Tupperware for storage and enjoy with a dollop of sour cream for a cool finish.

Finished Soup

Finished Soup

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