Nordic Winter Soup

Nordic Winter Soup

Sometimes I think winter in Chicago is tough...and then I think of a place like Finland.  Even in the heart of the cold countries of Norway, Finland, Denmark, and Sweden, there is a localvore movement.  Led by the world-famous, Michelin-starred Chef Rene Redzepi, his restaurant, Noma, celebrates local foods -- like celery root, leeks, parsnips, hearty grains.  He even has seaweed paper on his menu.  I'll stay away from Lake Michigan seaweed, but I'll use his inspiring work to push myself and find new flavors and ingredients.


Nordic Winter Soup

1 medium leek
1 celery root (about 3/4 pound)
2 parsnips (about 1/2 pound)
1/2 cup barley
2 cloves garlic
4 cups vegetable stock
2 cups water
5 sprigs thyme (or 1 tsp dried)
2 bay leaves
4 cups baby spinach
1/2 tsp nutmeg
Salt and pepper, to taste

For Step-by-Step photos on Cookbooth:

1. Gather ingredients

2. Trim off the green ends of the leek and discard

3. Quarter the leek, then thinly slice

4. Rinse leeks under running water to remove any grit.

5. Preheat a large pot over medium-high heat. No oil needed

6. Add leeks. Cover and sweet until leeksare translucent, about 8-10 miniutes.

7. You can use a good vegetable peeler to peel the celery root. You can also use a paring knife or chef's knife.

8. Dice celery root and parsnips.

9. Mince garlic

10. When leeks are done sweating, add the celery root, parsnips, and barley. Cook, uncovered, about 5 minutes, until there is just a little color on the parnips.

11. Add the garlic, vegetable stock, water, thyme, and bay leaves. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for about 20 minutes, until barley is tender.

12. Soup is ready with barley is tender, about 20 minutes of simmering

13. Remove the thyme sprig and bay leaves.

14. Stir in the spinach and nutmeg. Turn off the heat, cover, and let sit until spinach wilts, just a minute or so.

15. Enjoy

Servings: 4
Yield: 8 cups

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1/4 of a recipe (22.9 ounces).
Percent daily values based on the Reference Daily Intake (RDI) for a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition information calculated from recipe ingredients.

Amount Per Serving
Calories 257.32
Calories From Fat (5%) 12.62
Calories From Protein (8%) 21.6
Calories From Carbohydrates (87%) 223.1

Total Fat 1.51g 2%
Saturated Fat 0.36g 2%
Monounsaturated Fat 0.28g 
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.54g 
Trans Fatty Acids g 
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 273.22mg 11%
Potassium 1173.33mg 34%
Total Carbohydrates 56.79g 19%
Fiber 14.29g 57%
Sugar 11.06g 
Sugar Alcohols g 
Net Carbohydrates 42.5g 
Protein 7.08g 14%

Vitamin A 3212.67IU 64%
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 41.75mg 4%
Iron 144.1mg 801%
Vitamin E 3.63mg 36%
Vitamin D 0IU 0%
Thiamin 0mg 0%
Riboflavin 0.35mg 21%
Niacin 0.25mg 1%
Vitamin B6 2.92mg 146%
Folate 0.47mcg <1%
Vitamin B12 173.65mcg 2894%
Pantothenic Acid 0mg 0%
Vitamin K 1.23mcg 2%
Phosphorus 220.77mg 22%
Magnesium 279.3mg 70%
Zinc 119.13mg 794%
Copper 1.93mg 97%
Manganese 0.42mg 21%
Selenium 1.75mcg 3%