Parsnip-pear bisque with pecan-maple pesto
Equal parts parsnip and pear
1 medium sweet onion
1 cup sweet white wine
Water to cover
Cream to consistency
Pinch of cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander
1 cup pecans
2 tablespoons maple syrup
10 leaves basil
Peel and chop parsnips, caramelize in butter over medium-high heat until nice and golden brown. Add onions and cook until soft. Mix in the spices then add pears that are peeled and cored. Let this cook for about 10 minutes. If the pears don’t give up enough liquid to deglaze the pan add the wine, if they do then just drink the wine. Add just enough water to cover the ingredients and cook for half an hour. This mixture will be very thick after pureed, adjust the consistency with a dairy product of your choice. I like to use at least a small amount of heavy cream.
Put the pecans in a plastic bag and smash them very well into ¼ inch size pieces. Toast them in a hot pan, off heat add the maple syrup and chopped basil. Toss in some chunky sea salt, and if needed reduce the syrup just a bit. The salt and herbs should help this to not clump up too bad.
I like to add the pesto right into the soup, but it’s also nice to leave that up to the person eating the soup and serve the pesto alongside the soup with a nice hunk of bread.