Teri Carpenter of Albuquerque, New Mexico, writes: “On a trip to British Columbia, we dined at Blue Heron Inn, on Porpoise Bay, in Sechelt. They served a fabulous onion and fennel bisque. Could you get the chef to share the recipe with Gourmet?”
This bisque is so lush that demitasse cups make an ideal serving size.
Active time: 30 min Start to finish: 1 hr
Makes 12 servings.
- 2leeks (white and pale green parts only), chopped (1 cup)
- 3medium red onions, chopped (3 1/2 cups)
- 1/2lb fennel bulb (sometimes called anise), stalks discarded and bulb cored and chopped (1 1/4 cups)
- 1large garlic clove, minced
- 2tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4cup dry white wine
- 2cups vegetable stock or low-sodium broth
- 1 1/4cups water
- 1teaspoon salt
- 1/4teaspoon black pepper
- 1/8teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1cup heavy cream
- 2teaspoons pernod garnish:chopped fresh chives
DIRECTIONS Wash leeks well in a bowl of cold water, then lift out and drain well.
Cook onions, leeks, fennel, and garlic in butter in a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot over moderate heat, covered, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 15 minutes. Add wine and boil, uncovered, until evaporated, about 1 minute. Add stock, water, salt, pepper, and nutmeg and simmer, uncovered, until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in cream and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened and liquid is reduced to about 6 cups, about 15 minutes.
Purée soup in batches in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids), then transfer to a soup tureen and stir in Pernod.
Soup can be made 2 days ahead and cooled completely, uncovered, then chilled, covered. Reheat, adding more water if necessary to thin to desired consistency.