Cardoon soup with black truffle carpaccio

December 22, 2009

When my husband Marc and I tried the first spoonful of this soup, we fell silent and closed our eyes. The delicate taste of the cardoons was perfectly balanced with the earthy flavor of the truffles, and the smoothness of the soup was superbly contrasted by their slight crunch.

It was heaven on a spoon!

White wine iconA full-bodied white wine that’s not too acidic is a must for this soup. I recommend either a Pinot Gris from Alsace or a Pouilly-Fuissé from Burgundy.


Cardoon Soup with Black Truffle Carpaccio

serves 4
active time: 30 min

  1. 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  2. 1 medium Vidalia or Spanish onion – skinned, quartered and thinly sliced
  3. 2 garlic cloves – skinned and finely chopped
  4. 1/2 cup dry white wine
  5. 8 oz (227gr) Yukon Gold potato (1 large) – peeled and cut in 1/2” cubes
  6. 2 1/2 lbs (1.1 kg) blanched cardoons
  7. 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  8. 3 cups spring water
  9. 1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt or to taste
  10. freshly ground black pepper to taste
  11. 8 Italian parsley sprigs & 6 thyme sprigs – tied in a bundle with kitchen string
  12. 2 tablespoons crème fraîche
  1. half a 2.8 oz (79gr) jar Black Truffle Carpaccio or truffle oil as garnish
  2. 1/4 cup finely chopped chives as garnish

  1. Step 1: Heat a large heavy-bottomed soup pot at medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and onion, stir well and sauté for 5 to 6 minutes, until just golden, stirring from time to time. Add the garlic and wine. Stir well and continue to sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, until the wine has reduced to a syrupy sauce and has almost all evaporated. Add the potato cubes, blanched cardoons, stock, water, salt, pepper to taste and herb bundle. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover the pot and slow-simmer for 40 minutes until the cardoons are very tender. Remove the herb bundle and discard.
  2. Step 2: Purée the soup with a stick blender or food processor until very smooth. Strain in a medium sieve and return to the soup pot and gently re-heat at medium heat. Add the crème fraîche and stir until well incorporated. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed.
  3. Step 3: Ladle the soup into soup bowls, put a spoonful of black truffle carpaccio (or a spoonful of truffle oil) in the center, sprinkle with the chives and serve immediately.
  4. Cook’s note: You can replace the cardoons with frozen artichoke hearts. Use two 8 oz packages of artichoke hearts and reduce the water to 2 1/2 cups. Make the soup and strain exactly as for the cardoon soup.

soups, cardoon, black truffles

Viviane’s tip:
Even after peeling the cardoons, this vegetable tends to be a bit stringy. So to make a super-smooth soup, I like to strain the soup before serving it. Make sure to use a medium sieve (the holes are wider and more open than a fine sieve — see below). It would be very difficult and time-consuming to try using a fine sieve to strain this soup.

Pour some of the soup in a medium sieve, 2/3rds of the way.

Force the soup through the sieve with a silicone spatula.

When there is nothing left but a thick paste, discard the paste and pour another batch of soup in the sieve. Repeat until the entire soup has been strained.

© 2011 Viviane Bauquet Farre Food & Style NY LLC

Disclaimer: As always, my point of view is my own. I do not accept samples, and have no commercial relationship with any product, food or wine company.

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

robyn webb December 22, 2009 at 10:54 am


This is fantastic, a good one for the holidays!!
My hubs will appreciate the wine!


My Man's Belly December 22, 2009 at 1:34 pm

Looks divine!


dokuzuncubulut December 22, 2009 at 2:34 pm

I like it. I’m going to try…


Dawn Hutchins December 22, 2009 at 2:42 pm

This looks so light and flavorful and I love how you pair the wine with the soup.


Jonell Galloway December 22, 2009 at 3:53 pm

What a delightful post!

I live in Geneva, Switzerland, and we eat cardoon gratin at Christmas. This is a custom very specific to Geneva, and many people refer to cardoons as “Geneva cardoons.”

The addition of the truffles sounds delicious and I love your explanations and photos! Bravo.


Dana Treat December 23, 2009 at 2:41 am

Oh my goodness – I need some of that! The first time I ever tasted a black truffle was on the Rue du Cherche Midi in a delightful Italian restaurant. It was shaved over pasta and my life has never been the same. Occasionally I see them and want to buy them, but can’t justify the purchase because I don’t know how best to highlight them. Looks like I just got my answer!


wasabi prime December 23, 2009 at 12:27 pm

So rich and beautiful. How fitting that it’s served in a golden bowl!


Mathea December 23, 2009 at 3:31 pm

I have not been able to find cardoons locally in Chicago this year – I will be on the lookout, though!


Kristen December 26, 2009 at 1:41 pm

I have actually never tried cardoons but would love to try this veloute. Lovely!

P.S. Love the wine pairing tip!


Lydia, Clueless Crafter December 30, 2009 at 12:42 pm

Award goes to you for teaching me about cardoons, a plant I never knew existed. I must try this out!


Lori Lynn January 11, 2010 at 5:13 pm

I made a celeriac soup with a similar method.
Great pairing with the truffle carpaccio! I’m a fan.


Donna Ford April 25, 2011 at 9:36 am

Looks delicious for this cold and wet day. Great photo’s!


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