In the heart of New Orleans’ French Quarter, there’s a culinary gem where the walls echo over two centuries of history. Bayona, with its intimate cottage charm, plays host to a symphony of flavors crafted by the renowned Chef Susan Spicer. Here, amidst the clinking of glasses and the murmur of satisfied diners, a simple bowl of cream of celery soup takes on a life of its own—a testament to the power of comfort food.
One spoonful of this soup and you’re transported; the subtle, earthy flavor of celery mingled with rich cream and the humble potato speaks a universal language of home. While Bayona offers an array of delectable dishes, it’s this signature soup that has guests lingering just a bit longer over their meal.
Now, you can bring a taste of Bayona’s warmth to your kitchen with this adapted version of their cherished cream of celery soup.
Celery, the star of this dish, is a vegetable powerhouse. It’s low in calories but high in vitamins A, C, and K, not to mention a great source of antioxidants. When combined with onions and potatoes, you get an additional boost of vitamin C, potassium, and dietary fiber. The heavy cream adds a touch of indulgence, but also contributes calcium and vitamin D to the mix.
Remember, though, balance is key in nutrition, so enjoy this rich soup in moderation as part of a balanced diet.
Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Soup
- Consistency is Key: If you prefer a thinner soup, don’t hesitate to add a bit more stock or milk when reheating.
- Garnish Generously: Fresh chives and sourdough croutons don’t just add flavor, they also provide a delightful textural contrast.
- Make it Vegetarian: Opt for vegetable stock instead of chicken for a vegetarian-friendly version.
A Celery Soup with a Twist
Let’s recreate this comforting classic. For this recipe, you’ll need:
- 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 10 stalks of celery, chopped
- 1 small russet potato, peeled and cubed
- 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
- 4 cups of your chosen stock
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste
- Chopped fresh chives and sourdough croutons, for garnish
- In a large pot, melt the butter over a gentle heat. Add in the onions, celery, and potato, covering and cooking for about 10 minutes, stirring halfway through to ensure even cooking.
- Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir continuously for 2 minutes, laying the base for a thick, silky texture.
- Gradually incorporate the stock with a whisk and increase the heat to bring your soup to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender to the fork’s touch.
- After letting the soup cool slightly, purée it until smooth, working in batches if necessary, using an immersion blender or a standard blender.
- Stir in the cream and reheat the soup. At this stage, taste and season with salt and white pepper as per your preference.
- Serve hot, garnished with a sprinkle of chives and a handful of croutons for that satisfying crunch.
This soup holds up beautifully in the refrigerator for up to two days. When reheating, do so gently, and add a splash of milk or cream to loosen it up if needed.
As you ladle this homemade cream of celery soup into bowls, know that you’re partaking in a tradition of comfort and culinary excellence that has graced tables for decades. Whether it’s a chilly evening or you’re simply in need of a taste of nostalgia, this soup is a hug in a bowl, ready to be savored. Bon Appétit!