Curried Parsnip Soup

Source: Mary Berry/Marlena Spieler, Classic Home Cooking [p. 26]


  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1 lb parsnips, coarsely chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 2 tsp mild curry powder
  • 4 c chicken or vegetable stock
  • salt/black pepper
  • 3/4 c light cream
  • fresh chives


  1. Melt butter in a large pot. Add onions, parsnips, and garlic, and cook gently until onion is softened but not brown. Stir in curry powder and cook for one minute more.

  2. Add stock. Bring to a boil, then simmer 20 minutes (until parsnips are tender). Add salt and pepper to taste.

  3. Let the soup cool a bit, then puree in a blender, food mill, or food processor (I use a hand blender).

  4. Add the cream. Reheat gently (do not boil). Garnish with chives and serve.


  1. Recipe calls for 1.5 lbs parsnips, but they're always sold here in 1 lb. packages, so I adjusted the recipe -- if you have more, use more. The only other adjustments I've made are to reduce the stock from 7.5 cups to 4 and drop an extra 1 tbs of the cream. The stock reduction was mostly to get a thicker soup.

  2. You can substitute celeriac for the parsnips, or use a combination of the two.

  3. I use Spice Islands Curry Powder. What's sold as curry powder is a mix of spices, and they vary considerably, so you may consider mixing (fine tuning) your own. A fairly basic recipe is: 2 tbs ground cumin, 2 tbs ground coriander, 2 tsp ground turmeric, 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, 1/2 tsp mustard seed, 1/2 tsp ground ginger; combine in a blender or food processor and process to a fine powder. Adjust the red pepper for more or less heat. Other recipes may substitute dry mustard or any ground chiles, or add small amounts (up to 1/2 tsp) of ground fenugreek, cinnamon, cloves, and/or cardamom.