FRESH FENNEL VICHYSSOISE
The inclusion of fennel and a dash of Pernod puts a sophisticated spin on the classic chilled potato soup. Offer your guests iced tea with the meal.
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 cups thinly sliced fennel bulb (about 3 small fennel bulbs)
2 onions, sliced
1 pound small white potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
4 cups chicken stock or canned
low-salt chicken broth
2 tablespoons Pernod
2 cups half and half
Melt 2 tablespoons butter with 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add sliced fennel and onions. Cover and cook until fennel is tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Add potatoes and chicken stock; increase heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until potatoes are very tender, about 30 minutes. Remove from heat. Mix in Pernod. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Working in batches, puree soup in blender. Transfer soup to large bowl. Mix in 2 cups half and half. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper. Cool slightly. Chill soup uncovered until cold, then cover and refrigerate. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.)
Makes 8 servings.
A Cook on 08/23/01
Excellent! Easy to make, yet very sophisticated flavor. Nice with a garnish of frizzled leeks and/or a drizzle of infused oil.
A Cook on 08/03/00
Very good by the cup, not by the bowl.
( firstname.lastname@example.org ) from Boulder, CO on 08/02/00
Excellent cold soup for hot summer days. Intriguing taste of fennel in the background. Definitely would make again.