I always tell my students that making a delicious carrot soup is a great way to practice your knife skills. Since the soup will get puréed at the end, it doesn’t really matter how you cut the carrots up, so you can make many different types of cuts with the carrots and get all your practice in. If you’re not into practicing your knife skills, of course, you can use a food processor or chopper to cut up the carrots for this carrot ginger orange soup, but you’ll be missing out. 😉
The first cooking step, once you have all your carrots cut up, is to sweat the onions and carrots together. Sweating is a culinary term that isn’t used very often in home cooking settings, but it’s used all the time in professional cooking and is actually very descriptive. It means to cook the vegetables over a low to medium heat so that they sort of cook in their own juices. You’re not looking for color on the vegetables when you sweat them – you just want them to soften slightly and start to release their flavor. Adding salt to your vegetables helps bring out the moisture in the vegetables, letting them sweat faster.