Making soup is one of my most satisfying cooking activities and it is something that I do often. Most of the soups that I make start the same way with a mirepoix, which quite simply is a mixture of onion, carrot and celery. This particular soup, Cream of Fennel and Gruyere Soup with Sherry is unique in that it only includes two vegetables, and has a subtle flavour with a silky bisque-like texture.
This versatile soup can be served hot, warm, room temperature or cold in vichyssoise style. It can be made ahead and refrigerated. For longer storage, I freeze the soup base in FoodSaver pouches and add the cream and cheese when the soup is thawed and rewarmed for serving.
Cream of Fennel and Gruyere Soup with Sherry
CHEF TALK: This recipe has been adapted from a recipe that the wonderful chefs at the Jasper Park Lodge in Alberta, Canada utilized at one of their very first Christmas in November events. For a gluten-free version, substitute the all-purpose flour for an all-purpose gluten-free flour blend.
- 190 g butter (6.75 oz)
- 190 g onion, diced (about 1 medium onion)
- 375 g fennel, sliced (13 oz) (about 1 large fennel bulb)
- 190 g all-purpose flour or gluten-free flour blend (approximately 1 ½ cups)
- 2 L chicken stock (8 cups)
- 500 ml 35% heavy cream (2 cups)
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
- 500 g Gruyere Cheese, grated (about 5 cups)
- 125 ml sherry, optional or to taste (1/2 cup)
- Preheat the Dutch Oven over medium heat. Add the butter and allow to melt.
- Sauté the fennel and onions until softened.
- Add the flour to make a roux. Mix through the vegetables and continue to stir to cook out the flour. (about three minutes).
- Add the chicken stock and continue to stir to incorporate the liquid.
- Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until the fennel and onions are tender.
- Puree the soup with an immersion blender until very smooth (or a blender).
- Strain the soup to achieve a silky smooth soup. (This will eliminate the fennel fibre which you will discard)
- Add the heavy cream.
- Season to taste.
- Add the grated Gruyere cheese and whisk until smooth.
- Add the sherry, if using, and stir into the soup.
TO SERVE: Serve the soup hot, warm, room temperature or cold. Garnish the soup with a fennel frond, or chopped chives, or crispy onions, or bacon bits.
Here are your visual step-by-step instructions how to make Cream of Fennel and Gruyere Soup with Sherry:
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- Immersion Blender
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