Despite my best efforts, people, I can’t seem to come up with something clever and novel regarding carrots, fall, or autumn-themed anything. It doesn’t feel quite like fall here in Guanajuato, Mexico, but the chilly windy nights here call for warm soup nonetheless. And instead of sharing some forced soliloquy about carrots and fall, I will preface this recipe for delicious Ginger Carrot Soup with some awesome music that I’ve encountered during the 40th Annual International Cervantino Festival here in Guanajuato, Mexico.
“I know who I am and who I may be, if I choose.”
–Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote de La Mancha
The Cervantino is named after the beloved Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes, who penned the universally treasured Don Quijote de la Mancha. What started decades ago as a smattering of informal music and theatre street performances by local university students, The Cervantino is now Latin America’s most important cultural festival. Spanning three weeks in the city, artists, musicians, orchestras, and theatre troupes from around the world travel to the colonial mining city of Guanajuato to perform in venues both big and small. The ambience is incredible here right now. On its own, Guanajuato is an incredibly charming, colorful, friendly, and lively city. But now, this adored “Place of Frogs” has ballooned with hundreds of thousands of visitors from all over the world crawling the narrow snake-like alleyways and eating from the palm of one delicious cultural buffet. Wandering from charming plaza theatre shorts to electronic music mayhem in the city’s underground tunnels, I’ve seen and heard quite a bit already. And we’re only halfway through.
Here is a list of some music that I’ve consumed during the past couple of weeks. Enjoy!
– Aurelio Martinez and The Garifuna Soul Band (Garifuna from Venezuela)
– Oumou Sangaré (amazing from Mali)
– Anna Maria Jopek (Jazz fromPoland)
– Diknu Schneeberger Trio (Gypsy Jazz from Vienna)
– Bolivar Soloists (Strings from Uruguay, Venezuela, Argentina, and Finland)
Now on to the soup….
This recipe couldn’t be easier or more satisfying. The contrast of the sweetness from the carrots, plantains, and camote between the bite of the cayenne is really stellar. It’s terribly simple to make as well, and since it all ends up whirred together in the blender, it really matters not if the steps aren’t followed as below.
Ginger Carrot Soup
4 Cups Carrots
2 Cups Soy Milk (or other non-dairy milk)
1 Large Sweet Potato
1 Yellow Plantain
1 Yellow Onion
3 Tablespoons Curry Power
2 Tablespoons Fresh Ginger
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
Dash of Cayenne
First, peel and chop your carrots and sweet potatoes, place them in a medium saucepan and fill with water to the top of the vegetable pile. They should simmer until nice and soft to the touch. Remember, the smaller the chop the faster they cook. Do not throw away the water once the veggies are done cooking as this nutrient rich juice to thin out the soup later on. Next, sauté the chopped onions and fresh ginger in olive oil. When they are soft and translucent, add the plantains and sauté until soft and caramelized. Finally, stir in curry powder and turn off heat.
In a blender, whir batches of the curry mix and vegetables together with the soymilk. Add vegetable water to thin out and facilitate blending. Thin with more soy milk or water to preference, add cayenne to taste, and get ready to serve.
Garnish with cilantro or other greens, more cayenne, and soy or coconut milk. Cheers!