Pear and Celery Soup with Crispy Shallots

Maintenance | Serves 4 to 6 
Prep time: 30 minutes | Total time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups peeled, coarsely chopped ripe pear
1 cup coarsely chopped shallots
4 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper (optional)
4 cups coarsely chopped celery
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
3 cups water

    For the Garnish (optional):

    1/2 cup olive oil
    4 medium shallots, thinly sliced

      Directions

      For the Soup:

      1. In a large pot, combine the pear, shallots, olive oil, and a generous pinch of sea salt (and a grind of black pepper, if desired). Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5 minutes.

      2. Add the celery and thyme, season with another generous pinch of salt, and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated and the celery has just started to soften, about 12 minutes.

      3. Add the broth and water, raise the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the celery is tender, about 10 minutes.

      4. Using a blender, purée the soup in batches until smooth. Return the soup to the stove to reheat. Season to taste, and serve with the crispy shallots.

      For the garnish (optional):

      1. Heat the olive oil in a small skillet or wide saucepan until shimmering. Add half of the shallots and fry until golden. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels, season with salt, and repeat with the remaining shallots.
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