Roast carrot soup with carrot-top pesto
1.5kg carrots, coarsely chopped
Finely grated rind and juice of 1½ lemons, or to taste
110ml olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp dried red chilli flakes
1 litre chicken or vegetable stock
2 thyme sprigs
1 bunch Dutch carrots, trimmed, tops reserved for carrot pesto*
Preheat oven to 200C. Combine carrots, 2/3 of the lemon rind and 50ml oil, season and mix. Spread in a single layer on baking trays lined with baking paper and roast, swapping trays halfway through cooking, until tender and browned on edges, about 90 mins. Set aside.
Heat 2 tbsp oil in a saucepan over medium heat, add onion, garlic and chilli. Sauté until tender, 4-5 mins. Add stock, thyme, roasted carrots and 50ml water. Cook until carrots are mushy, 20 mins. Discard thyme. Purée until smooth, add lemon juice to taste and keep warm.
Meanwhile, combine Dutch carrots in a bowl with remaining lemon rind and oil, season and toss. Spread on an oven tray lined with baking paper and roast until browned and tender, 25 mins. Serve piled on top of soup and drizzled with pesto.
*Carrot pesto: Process together ¾ cup carrot tops, ½ cup flat-leaf parsley, 50g pistachios, 50g grated Parmesan and 2 garlic cloves until chopped. Then, with motor running, add 120ml olive oil in a steady stream and process until puréed. When ready to serve, add lemon juice to taste.