ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!
I’ve been making meals and bits from cookbooks whenever I have the chance lately. It’s a very chill (and also necessary) break from my own cookbook stuff. Lots of Ina classics in the mix (obviously), but since Fall is the season of the cookbook release, there’s been good stuff from plenty of other new works. I generally cook by feel/whatever’s around/whatever urgency is grabbing at me, so the straightforward process of opening a book, measuring, and connecting the dots has been grounding.

A little while ago, Gena sent me her new book based on her Food52 column, The New Veganism (which I love). Food52 Vegan serves as a gentle, vegetable-focused guide to naturally incorporating vegan dishes into your everyday. The viewpoint is one of vibrant and curious inclusivity. It’s not an outright effort to recreate classic omnivorous foods with vegan ingredients, which is a huge relief. Vegan diets have moved far away from being a strictly fringe choice because of certain culinary efforts to embrace the plant kingdom’s diversity (and other non-food motivated reasons). Off the top of my head I can think of about a hundred naturally vegan foods that are way more satisfying/interesting than a veggie burger. Gena seems to get that, and showcases that understanding through a bunch of recipes I can get excited about: roasted ratatouille, eggplant tagine with millet, and parsnip fries with harissa mayonnaise to name a few.

I love that the book is a non-intimidating size of 60 recipes. And also that there are shots of food with glasses of wine in the mix! Sometimes the vegan thing gets lumped in with the highest-vibe-achievable thing, and embracing the in-between has always been my personal thing, so I appreciated that.  The photographs are beautiful and relatable at the same time, which is important if you’re new to plant-based eating and want to get from A to B with minimal hesitation.

I made the gingered carrot bisque because I had a crisper FULL of carrots for some reason, freshly dug potatoes from my parents’ garden, and a few jars of homemade vegetable stock on hand as well. The ingredients/steps are minimal, but the soup is really interesting. Super creamy, naturally sweet, plenty of zing and depth from fresh ginger and a spoonful of curry powder, too. We had it with some fresh, seed-y sourdough for dinner and it was just the thing. I used a spicy curry powder, so it gave me that little flush in the cheeks that feels good on a cool day :)

Happy days and big hugs to you all. xo

for ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!ginger carrot bisque from Gena Hamshaw/Food 52pin it!
Ginger Carrot Bisque Recipe
Reprinted with permission from Food52 Vegan, by Gena Hamshaw, copyright © 2015, published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Print the recipe here!
Serves: 4-6
Notes: I changed a couple things when I made up this recipe from the book. I’ve noted those changes in parentheses, but will also summarize here: I lacked celery, so replaced it with an equal amount of diced celery root (extra creaminess!). Gena’s recipe calls for a swirl of savoury cashew cream at the end, which sounds amazing. No raw cashews on hand though, so I made a basic little bowl of tahini cream for mine. I used half in the soup and then reserved the rest for garnish (stirring a little turmeric into half of it as well). Instructions/Ingredients for this are below!

1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced celery (I used celery root)
1 (1 1/2 inch) piece of ginger, finely chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
1 1/4 pounds carrots, chopped
1 small to medium russet potato, cut into large pieces (I used a large yukon gold)
1 1/2 teaspoons mild curry powder

Tahini Cream:
1/4 cup raw tahini
1/3 cup filtered water (+ extra if needed)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and ginger and sauté until the onion is tender and translucent, about 8 minutes.

Stir in the broth, carrots, potato, and curry powder and bring to a boil. Season everything with salt. Decrease the heat to maintain a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are tender, about 25 minutes.

Using an immersion blender (or using a regular blender and working in batches), blend until completely smooth. Return the soup to the pot over low heat and cook, stirring often, until heated through.

In a small bowl, stir together the raw tahini, water, and salt to taste. It will seem chunky and weird at first, but keep at it until you have the consistency of coffee cream/half ‘n’ half. Add more water if necessary. Pour half of the tahini cream into the pot of soup and stir to incorporate.

With the remaining tahini cream, scrape half of it into a small bowl. Add the turmeric to the small bowl and stir to combine.

Serve the soup hot and garnish with swirls of the regular and turmeric tahini cream. Drag a paring knife through the swirls for a marble effect, if you like.

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan14/10/2015 - 7:22 am

    I got Gena’s book last week and have been cooking from it pretty much non-stop, SO good. Also, can I please come over for Monday night cocktails and we can pretend we are as cool as Ina the Queen? xoReplyCancel

    • Laura14/10/2015 - 8:28 am

      Yes please come over asap so we can pop our collars like Ina and get faced in the classiest manner possible (also like Ina). :D :D :D xoReplyCancel

  • Katrina14/10/2015 - 7:23 am

    This looks so comforting. Definitely need to get my hands on that book!ReplyCancel

  • Shelley | Sevengrams14/10/2015 - 8:56 am

    My crisper is totally filled a gigantic bag of carrots right now as well — this recipe could not be more timely or perfect. Also, these photos! That soup looks like a work of art – love it!ReplyCancel

    • Laura15/10/2015 - 8:37 am

      It’s so easy to throw together! I would totally recommend it if carrots are taking up tons of real estate in your fridge :)

  • Harriet14/10/2015 - 9:30 am

    I love Gena’s website & IG account — I totally get what you mean about inclusivity: her vibe is so welcoming and inviting. I’m glad to hear that carries over into her books. And this recipe looks divine. Carrot soup is one of my favourites: budget and belly friendly. xReplyCancel

    • Gena14/10/2015 - 1:50 pm

      Thank you, Harriet! I’m so glad you like following along.ReplyCancel

  • Brian @ A Thought For Food14/10/2015 - 10:48 am

    Tahini cream! Have never thought to do that.! I do love a bowl of ginger carrot soup (heavy on the ginger in this household). Can’t wait to make this!ReplyCancel

    • Laura15/10/2015 - 8:38 am

      I may have doubled the ginger specified in the recipe. That zing! Nothing like it :D

  • Kate14/10/2015 - 11:36 am

    This soup looks so good! Put my order in for the book last night and am seriously stoked to start cooking from it. Been reading the column for a while too, and am such a fan!ReplyCancel

    • Gena14/10/2015 - 1:51 pm

      Thank you so much for supporting the column, Kate!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle @ Hummingbird High14/10/2015 - 12:17 pm

    Oh sweet lord this looks delicious.ReplyCancel

  • Gena14/10/2015 - 1:52 pm

    Oh, Laura, I can’t get over how gorgeous the soup looks here. You did a phenomenal job bringing the recipe to life, and I am so glad you’ve enjoyed the book so far. Plus: tahini cream. Be still my heart! What a cool idea.

    Thanks again,


  • Heidi Kokborg14/10/2015 - 2:35 pm

    Oh wow! This looks amazing! Gena makes such good recipes!ReplyCancel

    • Laura15/10/2015 - 8:54 am

      It’s true! The book is a treasure :)

  • Jennifer Almarine14/10/2015 - 3:51 pm

    This sounds like a delicious, perfect fall soup and your photographs are gorgeous!ReplyCancel

  • Claudia | The Brick KItchen14/10/2015 - 9:17 pm

    What a gorgeous soup! I don’t think I made soup enough last winter but definitely need to give it more of a chance.. especially carrot soup (student budget friendly too!!). Love the sound of that tahini cream too – Gena’s book sounds wonderful.ReplyCancel

    • Laura15/10/2015 - 8:55 am

      So budget friendly and soooo yummy. Would totally recommend the book :D

  • Natalia15/10/2015 - 3:23 am

    This looks so good! And love your cream( i am more into tahini than cashews), so this will certainly be something for me.ReplyCancel

    • Laura15/10/2015 - 8:56 am

      Thanks Natalia! There’s something special about tahini/sesame with carrots. I think it goes back to that classic pairing of carrots and hummus, or something ;)

  • La Torontoise15/10/2015 - 4:49 am

    Laura, love this recipe! Thank you so much! I’ve been reading your blog for more than 6 months now, but my work is very hectic and could not write you. I love your photography and I learned a lot from it.
    I’m from Toronto, now living and working in North Europe. While in Toronto, your region was always my family’s preferred destination for all our long weekends… how could we forget the Niagara peaches, the wineries and so much more… Your posts bring all these warm memories. plus the comfort food:-)
    Thank you!!ReplyCancel

  • Jodi15/10/2015 - 7:16 am

    A good glass of wine can be the best side dish to any vegan dinner. I love the in betweeness and I love that vegan food does not have to complicated or filled with hard to find ingredients. It can be local, and garden to table and just as simple and delicious as this soup. I’m sure the book is nothing but stunning. Thanks for sharing a little bit of it here. Tahini cream my heart.xReplyCancel

  • Carolina15/10/2015 - 8:53 am

    Gorgeous! I am definitively making this soup. I love how gourmet it looks, sometimes soups or creams tend to be looked as “boring food” but for me is quite the opposite. Also, I am all in for the “in between´s” in vegan lifestyle. Another extra for soups & creams is that you can make a big batch and then you are off duty for a day or two. Love the website, greetings from Costa Rica :)ReplyCancel

  • Julia Mazzucato15/10/2015 - 8:59 am

    I love this! The pattern in the top is absolutely stunning. Your photography is gorgeous as always. I really need that cookbook!
    Hope you don’t mind- I shared a link to one of your delicious recipes in my post today. :-)

    Julia // Little Miss Haute CoutureReplyCancel

  • Cindy Karnitz15/10/2015 - 10:46 am

    Thank you! I too shy away from vegan foods that try to mimic omnivore offerings. I would rather have the vegetables than a vegan chicken nugget (gross). Thank you for another great recipe, story, and stunning photos.ReplyCancel

  • Allyson15/10/2015 - 10:52 am

    The soup looks so beautiful- I love the marbling. I’m not vegan or vegetarian- I work in a restaurant that’s pretty meat heavy, and there’s no way around eating meat- but I try to eat as plant heavy at home as possible. I appreciate plant based recipes that put the focus on the flavor and joy of the food, rather than a long list of “thou shall not”s. I suppose what I’m really trying to say is excellent work. I can’t wait for your book.ReplyCancel

  • Heather15/10/2015 - 12:51 pm

    Get OUTTA here with that tahini swirl!!! Gorgeous, Laura. Can’t wait to give this one a try and I’m going to check out Gena’s other stuff as I’m new to her :)ReplyCancel

  • Grace15/10/2015 - 3:05 pm

    I know for a fact that a more beautiful carrot soup does not exist on this planet. So gorgeous Laura!ReplyCancel

  • This bisque is so hearty, beautiful and wholesome!! I LOVE ginger and carrot together but have never made a bisque like this before. Pinning!ReplyCancel

  • Susannah (Lemon and Coconut)15/10/2015 - 5:05 pm

    Oh wow I’ve seen some good looking soups but this one’s taken the prize, it’s just fabulous! :)ReplyCancel

  • Jessie Snyder | Faring Well16/10/2015 - 5:19 pm

    Yay for Food52 Vegan! Isn’t the book so lovely and approachable? I feel like even on the nights when cooking is the last thing I want to do there is a recipe in there that I can manage and love. Gena is so great. And your rendition of her soup here is so pretty! My goodness, if there was an award for soup plating I think you should win. And I loved the part about the welcomed flush in your cheeks now that is so crisp and cool. Makes me feel so cozy and dreaming of a bowlful now. Happy autumn, Laura! – xoReplyCancel

  • […] I’m excited to try this creamy vegan bisque by one of my favorite blogs, The First Mess.  Ok, fall isn’t all that bad.  RECIPE […]ReplyCancel

  • Lindsey @ Lou Lou Biscuit17/10/2015 - 5:17 pm

    This is the prettiest soup! I love the way you did the garnish. Gotta love Food52 :)ReplyCancel

  • Links You'll Love18/10/2015 - 9:39 am

    […] pretty into soup right now, and this Ginger Carrot Bisque from The First Mess is topping my […]ReplyCancel

  • Emily18/10/2015 - 9:01 pm

    Most gorgeous bowl of soup I have seen this week!ReplyCancel

  • Sarah | Well and Full18/10/2015 - 10:20 pm

    I love that you chose this recipe!! I was actually just leafing through Food52 Vegan earlier today and thinking about how lovely the photos are. They’re very no-fuss but still have such a beautiful aesthetic about them. And yes some photos feature ~WiiinNee~ whooaa! ;) I’m really glad you brought up the whole vegan/high vibe/healthier than thou attitude because it can be a bit stifling, if I’m being honest. Finding balance and the in between, as you put it, is my favorite way to go :)ReplyCancel

  • thefolia19/10/2015 - 2:24 am

    Looks like a painting…simply beautiful…happy feasting!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel @ The Castejóns20/10/2015 - 9:06 pm

    I could just look at the pictures all day! I’d go vegan if someone made me food that looked that good everyday!ReplyCancel

  • […] chocolate sweet potato ice cream. this earl grey quinoa oatmeal with pumpkin spice puree. this vegan ginger carrot bisque. this tofu ganache. this single-ingredient maple […]ReplyCancel

  • Renee Kemps24/10/2015 - 3:00 pm

    Love this recipe!! That swirl/pattern is just perfection.ReplyCancel

  • Ingrid - Let's talk evergreen01/11/2015 - 7:28 am

    I hear such good things about this book, I think I should get it too. Hope everything with your own book is going well. Love how you made those swirls in the soup!ReplyCancel

  • J02/11/2015 - 1:43 pm

    This not only looks beautiful, but sounds delicious as a Fall treat!I may add in some radicchio finely sliced for some added bite, as well as the superfood benefits, (plus the purple would look gorgeous on top) but it also looks really good just as it is. Thank you for sharing! :)ReplyCancel

  • […] two full dinners. For the first I hosted two friends from the department. I made this spectacular ginger-carrot bisque from The First Mess (who apparently got it from Food52). The colors! the flavors! the artistry! It […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Uzbeki Carrots reviewed on 101 Cookbooks Carrot Fried Rice from Vegan Richa Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal from Oh She Glows The First Mess made a most lovely Carrot Ginger Bisque […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Food52 Vegan is everything I dig in a staple cookbook. It’s concise (60 recipes). There are plenty of gorgeous photos. The recipes are creative and inspiring. And, despite being “vegan,” it’s neither preachy nor inaccessible. It’s a great primer for cooking plants for anyone. Throughout the book Gena shares her simple tips and techniques for making plant based cooking stellar. Including primers on tofu, tempeh, nut milks, whole grains, coconut oil, nutritional yeast, egg replacers, sweeteners, the works. Reading through the book I found myself saying “right on!” to myself, under my breath, alone in my kitchen. I can’t wait to dive into more of the recipes (lentil sloppy joes! butternut squash mac & cheese! ginger carrot bisque!). […]ReplyCancel

  • Anastasia09/09/2016 - 5:18 pm

    Tried it, loved it. Fun and easy to make plus yum.ReplyCancel

  • […] Carrot Bisque via The First Mess […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Ginger Carrot Bisque from the Food52 Vegan Cookbook (but found on The First Mess blog!). I’m planning on making bread to go with this, but we’ll have naan if not. […]ReplyCancel

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