Saturday, August 27, 2011

Kumara, dip and soup (kumara and celery)






Kumara, the New Zealand sweet potato, is a very Kiwi winter staple. There are different types of kumara, but the most common are the gold/yellow/orange ones, and the red ones. The reds look prettier, but if you peel them inside they are white, while the orange ones are still colourful under their skins.





Kumara are sweet and they mush and blend so well that I used them a lot when I was making baby food, years ago. The kids have progressed from baby food now, but I haven't stopped blending kumara: I am just adding more seasonings to it now :-).



Kumara dip




I used the orange kumara here, peeled. This is not a recipe as such, you can add what you like to your blend. Peel and boil the kumara, or roast them for more flavour. Blend with a couple of garlic cloves (peeled), salt and pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, and a fevourite spice (some examples are smoked paprika, cumin, coriander, or a mixture of all of the above if you like). Serve as a dip or with a plate of meze.




Kumara and Celery Soup




This is such a classic NZ soup, everybody seems to know how to make this one: You just need some kumara (I used the red ones, peeled). Cook about 2 large kumara with 3 or 4 celery sticks (with leaves, most Kiwis do not add the leaves here, but celery leaves have lots of flavour and they are perfect for soup) in a litre of light vegetable stock. When the celery and kumara are soft blend well and serve. No need to add cream, in my opinion,  but do if you like. Serves 4.


Photos and Recipes by Alessandra Zecchini ©


19 comments:

  1. Hanno un colore stupendo..........chissà se si trovano qui, mi piacerebbe molto provarle, in tutt'e due le versioni!! Ciao bella

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  2. Puoi usare le patate dolci che si trovano in Italia :-).

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  3. HHHMMMmmm... imaginatively prepared baby food is underrated - especially as comfort food!

    But maybe that just means I'll eat anything ...

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  4. La mia collega neozelandese sta per rientrare dalle sue ferie, le chiedero' lumi!

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  5. ....sono dell'idea che la panna sia la migliore amica dei pessimi cuochi.....me l'ha fatto notare anche un ristoratore siciliano nel suo locale, dove ho mangiato veramente da incanto :))
    la zuppa è decisamente invitante, i crostini anche e io vado matta per zuppe e crostini ^^

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  6. It sound so delicious..I love sweet potatoes in any form, I guess I am thinking of the orange one..and of course photos are stunning..

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  7. Very colorful! Great pictures. :)

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  8. Davvero interessante, conosco altri tipi di patate dolci, ma di queste non avevo neanche mai sentito il nome....il mondo è proprio grande!!!!

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  9. That looks and sounds so good, Alessandra! And very nice photos again too. Normally, my favorite is the first photo but this time it’s the third shot - the kumara dip. It looks so much like hummus. And the Kumaras look so much like sweet potatoes. You make me want to visit New Zealand for a cuisine tour! Great post!!

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  10. I have to say I prefer kumara to regular potato but haven't actually cooked it as a soup, maybe time yet before the warmer weather sets in.

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  11. mi intriga molto...saro' costretta a cercare le patate dolci....

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  12. @ Araba, sicuramente te ne parlera', chissa se riesce anche a portarsele dietro!

    @ B, sono daccordo, a meno che tu non sia di Bologna e allora la panna la sai usare.

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  13. @ Eddie, thank you, but I am sure that you must have sweet potatoes in the US?

    @ Alli, can't believe you haven't had the kumara and celery soup yet :-).

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  14. che strane patate, qui non le ho mai viste Alessandra! Tutte le volte che passo a trovarti c'è sempre qualcosa da imparare, un abbraccio cara e buona domenica!

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  15. I didn't know about adding celery leaves to soup. I am making soup all the time at the moment so must try it. Thanks.

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  16. Not me! I have not heard of the recipes before but I am sure gonna try them!

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  17. @ Veggieglobber, I know so many people in the country too who throw away celery leaves, I add them to soup, but also to everything else, just chop them and add them on, they are good and full of flavour.

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  18. Ale, I didn't know about the celery leaves!

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  19. Yum...love them both, what a fantastic healthy dip :)

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