Roast parsnip soup with sage and bacon dumplings

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This is a beautiful soup to have for Christmas dinner. Parsnips are at there best at this time of year. The honey roasting of the vegetable enhances their natural sweetness. The sage and bacon dumplings are a wonderful addition to the soup and it is really worth making the effort to prepare them.



For the dumplings;

1 onion, finely chopped
100g streaky bacon, sliced
2tblsp sage, chopped
225g full fat cream cheese
225g plain flour
1 egg, beaten
1 egg yolk

For the soup;

600g parsnips, peeled and chopped
1tblsp honey
1 onion, finely chopped
800ml chicken stock
150ml single cream
Deep fried sage


For the dumplings;

In a pan sweat the onion and bacon in a little butter until the bacon is crisp, add the sage then remove from the heat and cool. Mix together the onion mix, cream cheese and flour, add the eggs and season to taste. Leave to rest for 30mins. Mould the mix into small dumplings with well floured hands and cook in a pan of simmering water for 20mins.

For the soup;

Pre heat the oven to 220c. Place a large tray into the oven with a little butter and oil. When the pan is hot and the butter starts to foam add the parsnips and toss well to coat. Cook for 15min then stir in the honey cook for another 20mins, stir every 5mins to prevent the parsnip from sticking. In a large pan add a little butter and sweat the onion, add the roast parsnip and the stock and bring to the boil, cook for 15mins then puree the soup with a blender. Strain the soup back into the pan and bring back to the boil, add the cream and dumplings and season to taste, simmer for 5mins then serve piping hot poured into soup bowls. Garnish with crisp sage.

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