Oct 25
2010

Spicy Potato & Fennel Soup Recipe with Parmesan Bagel Croutons

Spicy Potato & Fennel Soup Recipe with Parmesan Bagel Croutons

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This is the time of year when I have to fight for possession of my pillow. Each morning, our two cats, Taz and Sundance, inch their way up the bed in an attempt to find the most potent source of body heat. Apparently that source is my head. With two cats flanking the sides of my sleep-tousled head, I look like Princess Leia on growth hormones. As claustrophobic as this situation may sound, I find it oddly comforting. Their contented purrs vibrate against my head and I find myself drifting back into a deep, restful sleep. Eventually, as obligations and two noisy kids call, I pull myself out of bed and find myself spending the rest of the day searching for a way to warm my body as effectively as feline earmuffs. If I was smart, I would follow Taz’s lead and cover an entire heat vent with my chilled body. Instead, I resort to fleece pants, hot tea, and bowls of steaming soup.

The soup pot and crockpot came out of hiding a couple of weeks ago and ever since then I have been making comforting dishes, such as The Family Crockpot Applesauce; Mediterranean Chicken, Bean and Pasta Soup; and Crockpot Gingered Chickpea and Spicy Tomato Stew. This potato and fennel soup is a creamy soup, made without a single drop of cream. The vegetables are cooked down in vegetable broth and then pureed until they reach a silky, creamy texture. Topped with toasted Parmesan bagel croutons, this soup is a hearty and easy meal. It will warm you to your toes – almost as well as two heat-seeking felines.

PotatoFennelSoup1

Soup:
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Add chopped onion and fennel and cook until they begin to soften, 4 to 5 minutes.

PotatoFennelSoup2

Stir in red pepper flakes. Add diced potatoes and vegetable (or chicken) broth. Bring the soup to a boil. Cover saucepan, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the potato is tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat and let cool 10 minutes (believe me, this could save you the pain of scorching hot soup landing on your skin). Using a food processor, blender, or immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in minced fresh sage leaves.

Croutons:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut a plain or whole-wheat bagel into 1/4-inch thick circles. Place the bagel rounds on a baking sheet and lightly brush each one with olive oil.

PotatoFennelSoup3

Bake for 3 minutes. Sprinkle a small amount of finely grated Parmesan cheese one each round and bake for additional 2 to 3 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the bagel rounds are toasted. Remove from oven and immediately (and gently) press a small piece of fennel frond into the cheese of each crouton.

Serve soup hot and garnish with croutons.

PotatoFennelSoupLS

Other creamy potato soups:

Cookin’ Canuck’s Sweet Potato Soup with Maple & Bacon
Cookin’ Canuck’s Spicy Potato, Leek & Cauliflower Soup with Roasted Red Pepper Puree
Wasabimon’s Curry Potato Soup with Lamb Meatballs
Two Peas and Their Pod’s Baked Potato Soup
My Korean Kitchen’s Pork Bone & Potato Soup (Gamjatang)

Spicy Potato & Fennel Soup with Parmesan Bagel Croutons

Soup:
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
1 bulb fennel, fronds removed & reserved, finely chopped
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 1/2 lbs. russet potatoes, peeled and diced
5 1/4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
Salt & pepper to taste
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh sage leaves

Croutons:
1 plain or whole-wheat bagel, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
3 tbsp (approximately) olive oil
3 tbsp finely grated Parmesan cheese
Fennel fronds

Soup:
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Add chopped onion and fennel and cook until they begin to soften, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in red pepper flakes.

Add diced potatoes and vegetable (or chicken) broth. Bring the soup to a boil. Cover saucepan, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the potato is tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

Remove the soup from the heat and let cool 10 minutes (believe me, this could save you the pain of scorching hot soup landing on your skin). Using a food processor, blender, or immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in minced fresh sage leaves.

Croutons:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut a plain or whole-wheat bagel into 1/4-inch thick circles. Place the bagel rounds on a baking sheet and lightly brush each one with olive oil.

Bake for 3 minutes. Sprinkle a small amount of finely grated Parmesan cheese one each round and bake for additional 2 to 3 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the bagel rounds are toasted. Remove from oven and immediately (and gently) press a small piece of fennel frond into the cheese of each crouton.

Serve soup hot and garnish with croutons.

Serves 6.

Printable recipe

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{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

1 alison @ Ingredients, Inc. October 25, 2010 at 1:27 pm

I love fennel and this sounds great. Love the Parmesan Bagel Croutons-nice touch!

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2 Paula October 25, 2010 at 1:41 pm

I remember potato soup from my childhood and I think that`s a good moment to make this soon again :)

thanks for sharing!
Paula

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3 Grace October 25, 2010 at 1:54 pm

Wow! the soup looks delicious! The photos are amazing. I was just talking about soups and applesauce. I haven't made applesauce in ages, let alone ever made it in a crockpot, what a great idea. The parmesan bagel croutons will be a hit in our household.

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4 bellini valli October 25, 2010 at 1:57 pm

Nopw this is a soup I can aspire too. Love the additon of fennel here for that taste your guests would ask about.

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5 Maria October 25, 2010 at 2:37 pm

I could use a bowl of this soup today. Love the fennel in there.

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6 maggy@threemanycooks October 25, 2010 at 2:41 pm

LOVE this soup! And as luck would have it, I happen to have some extra fennel lying around :) Now I know how to use it up!!

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7 Jenny October 25, 2010 at 2:47 pm

Wow, I need this today! Rainy cold day calls for a beautiful soup like this!

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8 Emily Malloy October 25, 2010 at 2:50 pm

This looks perfect. Oh my gosh. Perfect for a chilly autumn's day!

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9 warmvanillasugar October 25, 2010 at 3:03 pm

This soup looks so tasty!!

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10 doughmesstic October 25, 2010 at 3:29 pm

With the pouring down rain, this looks like heaven. I so need a hot soup – and your pictures are amazing, as always!

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11 Fromagette October 25, 2010 at 4:41 pm

It is chilly, dark, and rainy day in the northwest today….your soup looks like the PERFECT antidote!

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12 eatgreek.net October 25, 2010 at 4:54 pm

mmm…. yummy! I think I'm hungry!!!

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13 wenderly October 25, 2010 at 5:57 pm

That soup sounds divine! Like a big warm hug! And that opening photo is *stunning* took my breath away!

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14 Kristin King - Norfolk Cooking Examiner October 25, 2010 at 7:10 pm

That sounds fantastic – my kind of soup! ..And you can't go wrong with topping it with crunchy bread :)

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15 Suzanne October 25, 2010 at 7:24 pm

This soup looks divine and yummy and comforting! Absolutely to-die-for!

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16 A Canadian Foodie October 25, 2010 at 8:27 pm

Very unique recipe – like a licorice scented potato soup with the yummy cheese toasts… the texture of your soup looks really lovely. Potato soups can often have a glue-like consistency.
:)
Valerie

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17 Michelle October 25, 2010 at 9:33 pm

Such an interesting recipe and the croutons are so cute!

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18 Tracy October 25, 2010 at 10:07 pm

This sounds incredible! Perfect for a rainy day like today!

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19 Pegasuslegend October 25, 2010 at 10:54 pm

very lovely would love to serve this to my family

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20 Michelle @ Brown Eyed Baker October 25, 2010 at 11:03 pm

I would LOVE this soup! I can't believe there isn't any cream! And those bagel croutons? Mmm!

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21 Kalyn October 25, 2010 at 11:16 pm

What a gorgeous photo of the soup. Your first paragraph reminded me why I could never have a cat!

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22 Karina Allrich October 26, 2010 at 1:27 am

Fleece and hot creamy soup are the perfect warm-up combo. I love your addition of fennel to this spud potage. I bet it really perks it up. Gorgeous photography, too!

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23 Evan @swEEts October 26, 2010 at 1:57 am

Bookmarked! We still need a few more weeks for warm soups like this.. I can just smell it now :)

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24 Barbara Bakes October 26, 2010 at 2:41 am

I need to make more of the crockpot applesauce. I love that this soup is creamy without cream. I've never had potato soup with fennel. I should give it a try.

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25 Amanda October 26, 2010 at 3:18 am

I absolutely LOVE creamy soups! This looks wonderful Dara :)

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26 Nancy October 26, 2010 at 4:57 am

This is definitely my type of soup with two of my favorite veggies!!

I had a cat that used to do that – he would literally sleep on top of my head.. and I loved hearing him purr also!!

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27 LimeCake October 26, 2010 at 11:41 am

potato and fennel… don't think i've tried this combination before. this looks delicious!

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28 Barbara @ Modern Comfort Food October 26, 2010 at 12:40 pm

You have such a wonderful way of taking simple ingredients, putting them together in a genuinely innovative manner, and coming out with total deliciousness. About half of the fall dinners at my house are soups, and I so look forward to trying this one! Just lovely.

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29 blackbookkitchendiaries October 26, 2010 at 6:12 pm

i've never tried this fennel soup before.. but im sure it's delicious. thank you for sharing.

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30 marla {family fresh cooking} October 26, 2010 at 6:53 pm

The combo of potatoes and fennel sounds wonderful. Love how your kitties get in all that snuggle time – sounds like they have their priorities straight! Gotta love fleece huh. I am so happy to be wearing mine again :) xo

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31 France October 26, 2010 at 8:05 pm

My mom used to make potato soup but without the bacon it never tasted very good. As I'm always finding ways to make things healthier, fennel sounds like the perfect addition. We head back to rainy Vancouver tomorrow and I will definately be making soup!

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32 Jeanette October 26, 2010 at 11:25 pm

This looks so nice and creamy, a nice comforting soup.

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33 Laurie @simplyscratch October 27, 2010 at 2:58 am

Fall = Soup!! I love this recipe… definitely going to try it!!

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34 whozyerdanny October 27, 2010 at 1:18 pm

Fennel sounds like a great addition to a fabulous potato soup.

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35 Elin October 27, 2010 at 2:56 pm

CC….I love potatoes and this soup is just great with the fennel….slurp slurp thanks for sharing this.

Have a nice day,
Elin

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36 Cajun Chef Ryan October 27, 2010 at 7:13 pm

This soup looks like a great soup, and the croutons are perfect.

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37 Chef Fresco October 29, 2010 at 12:58 am

yUM! Great soup and those huge croutons look so fancy!

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38 hercarrot November 3, 2010 at 1:23 pm

You know it's Fall when the soup recipes are abundant! This looks so yummy. I'll have to make it for the husband.

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39 zerrin November 6, 2010 at 10:59 am

This one is a perfect winter soup. I love the flavors in it and the crutons look amazing on them.

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40 Maris November 8, 2010 at 1:54 am

This looks beautiful! I love soup and this sounds perfect for a chilly night in Chicago.

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41 Fennel Friday November 30, 2012 at 9:07 am

Happy Fennel Friday! We love this recipe and it is featured on our Fennel Soup Recipe Round-Up this week! THANKS!
http://fennelfriday.com/fennel-recipes-for-soup/

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