This was a huge hit at last weekend's dinner party, and again last night for other friends. In both cases I served it chilled, though it's written as a hot soup recipe. I did not include the avocado garnish, but topped it with fresh chervil leaves. The recipe is written for six larger servings; I was serving more courses so served less. This recipe made 14 four ounce servings.
Per Hugh: This soup originated from some work I did for the National Peanut Board, which led to my researching South Carolina Low country food and the popularity of peanuts in Gullah cuisine. When I finally wrote down the recipe, I was struck by how odd it looked on paper but how good the results were.
1 tblp unsalted butter
1/2 c minced yellow onion
1/2 cup minced celerey
1 cup diced tomato
1 tblsp curry powder
1 tblsp chopped chipotle in adobo, or substitute a good paprika or other chile to your taste
1/2 cup smooth, unsweetened all natural peanut butter
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cubed
4 cups chicken stock
1 tblsp heavy cream
1 ripe avocado
1 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice
pinch of salt
2 tblsp chopped roasted peanuts
In a heavy bottomed soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat until it just begins to bubble. Add the onion and celery and sweat down for about five minutes, then add the tomato and spices. Sweat those together for about two minutes then add the sweet potato, chicken stock and peanut butter. Simmer until the sweet potato is tender, then remove from heat and puree in batches in a blender. Add cream, then salt and pepper to taste.
Here, he advises straining the soup but I felt my puree was very fine and skipped that step.
For the garnish, dice the avocado and dress with lime juice and salt. Reheat the soup in a clean pot and divide between six bowls. Garnish with avocado and peanuts.