This one comes from my friend Gretchen Buegge -- I knew her in San Diego and now she and her family live in Yakima, Washington...
3 1/2 cups of carrots (peeled and cut into chunks)
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
3 Tbsp butter
1 onion, chopped
1 stick of celery (sliced), plus 2-3 pale leafy celery tops
2 small potatoes, peeled and sliced
4 cups of stock (vegetable or chicken)
3 tsp ground coriander
1 Tbsp chopped fresh coriander (also known as cilantro)
3/4 cup of milk
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Peel and chop carrots. Heat the oil and 2 Tbsp of butter in a large saucepan. Saute onion over gentle heat for 3-4 minutes, until slightly softened. Do not allow to brown.
2.) Slice the celery and chop the potatoes. Add them to the onions and cook for a few minutes, then add the carrots. Continue to cook over a gentle heat for 3-4 minutes, stirring and then cover.
3.) Reduce the heat even further and sweat vegetables for about 10 minutes. Shake the pan or stir occasionally so the vegetables do not stick to the bottom of the pan.
4.) Add the stock and bring the liquid to a boil. Half cover the pan and simmer for a further 8-10 minutes, until the carrots and potatoes are tender.
5.) Remove 6-8 tiny celery leaves for garnish and finely chop the remaining celery tops. Melt the remaining butter in a small saucepan and saute the ground coriander for about 1 minute, stirring constantly.
6.) Reduce the heat and add the chopped celery tops and fresh coriander and saute for about 1 minute - set aside.
7.) Process the soup in a food processor or blender and pour into a clean saucepan. Sitr in the milk and coriander mixture. Season, heat gently, taste and adjust seasoning. Serve the soup garnished with the reserved celery leaves.
*** also tastes good garnished with a bit of sour cream, cheese or hot pepper sauce.