Maple syrup lends a distinctive flavor to this rich creamy soup. Serve hot as a prelude to a winter dinner party.
4 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
4 ribs celery, sliced
4 cups chicken broth
1 pound rutabaga, peeled and cut into chunks
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Freshly grated nutmeg
1. Melt the butter in a wide saucepan. Add the onion and celery and toss to coat evenly. Cover the pan and cook over low heat for 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
2. Pour in the chicken broth. Add the rutabaga and cover the pan. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the rutabaga is tender enough to mash against the side of the pan. Transfer to the container of a blender or processor and whirl until smooth. Return to the pan. Stir in the cream, maple syrup, cloves, salt, and pepper. Place over medium heat and warm gently, but do not boil. Serve hot, sprinkled with nutmeg.