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Playing Winter Vegetable Chowder


  • 1/4 cup EVOO Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 large bulb of fennel, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 1 pound butternut squash, diced 1/2-inch
  • 2 to 3 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 large parsnips, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 leeks, halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 large fresh bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons each chopped thyme, parsley and rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon each dried sage and marjoram
  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • Grated nutmeg, to taste
  • Oyster crackers, for serving


Serves: 4-6


Heat EVOO in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add fennel, squash, carrots, parsnips, onions, leeks, garlic, fresh and dried herbs. Cook partially covered, stirring occasionally to soften, 8-10 minutes. Add stock and simmer while you make white sauce.

In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour, cook 1-2 minutes then add milk and simmer to thicken. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Once thickened, combine sauce with soup and keep warm over low heat until ready to serve. Top each bowl with oyster crackers.