Andrew and I met in Ireland and spent a little more than a year living there together while I was in graduate school. Having grown up in southern California, the Irish weather was a bit of an adjustment. Don't get me wrong, I knew it rained a lot there. But my perception of a lot of rain, and the amount of rain there actually was that year, were vastly different. I mean, it rained every single day of February, March, and April for goodness sake and probably every other day for the rest of the months! The Irish have a saying that if you can see the hillsides, it's about to rain, and if you can't see them, it is already raining!
It probably goes without saying that the Irish make incredible soups. I know I feel like doing nothing more than spending the day cooking up a soup when it rains. But. while I have a mere few days a year to perfect my soups, the Irish have 300+. I've never had a bad soup in Ireland. In fact it was always my favorite lunch there. Any pub or restaurant would have a soup of the day and brown bread any day of the week. And it was ALWAYS delicious.
It wasn't raining today, but it felt like fall. The sun had shifted just so in the sky and the air was a little cooler and crisper. It was time to finish harvesting our last crop of summer squash and carrots. Looking at these vegetables I was inspired to attempt a soup reminiscent of something I would have had in Ireland. I think I did pretty well!
1 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 an onion diced
3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
2 medium fugi apples, peeled and sliced
1 large yellow summer squash (or 2 smaller ones), sliced and seeds removed
small handful of fresh thyme
2 Cups of vegetable or chicken stock
1/3 Cup Half and Half
Fresh ground pepper
Saute diced onion in olive oil 2 minutes. Then add carrots, apple, and thyme and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Then add the squash and cook until carrots are tender, about 12-14 minutes. Add stock and simmer on low another 10 minutes or until vegetables are soft. Put in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Return to pot, add half and half and fresh ground pepper to taste. Garnish with thyme leaves.