Creamy Celery and Fennel Soup with Chilled Grapes

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From Valentines Viand 2.14.2007


1 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 fennel bulbs, cored, sliced, and chopped
1 medium-sized yellow onion, finely chopped
1 celery heart, sliced
1?2 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
1?4 tsp celery seed
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1?2 tsp each salt and pepper
3?4 cup of white wine
Juice of 1?2 lemon
1 2/3 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
1?4 cup of half and half
1 large handful purple seedless grapes, halved
Chopped chives, to garnish

Prep time: 25 minutes . Cooking time: 35 minutes . Makes 8 small cups or 4 bowls

Note: I doubled the recipe for the viand. Also I found that the texture was nicer once put through a blender, using a stick blender did not make it smooth enough.

1.) Heat the butter and olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the fennel, oinion, celery, fennel seed, celery seed, garlic, salt and pepper, and sauté, stirring occaisionally for about 10 minutes, until softened. Add the white wine, lemon juice, and stock and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in the half and half and continue to cook gently for an additional 5 minutes.

2.) Pour the mixture into a blender or food processor and puree. Serve it in small cups, teacups, or small glasses, garnished with grapes and chives.