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Sweet Potato Soup
Ingredients:

* 2 Tbsp (1/4 stick) butter
* 1 cup chopped onion
* 2 small celery stalks, chopped
* 1 medium leek, sliced
* 1 large garlic clove, chopped
* 1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 5 cups)
* 4 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth (use vegetable broth for vegetarian option)
* 1 cinnamon stick
* 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
* 1 1/2 cups half and half
* 2 Tbsp maple syrup
* The leafy tops of the celery stalks, chopped

Directions:

1 Melt the butter in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add chopped celery stalks and leek, sauté about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 2 minutes.

2 Add sweet potatoes, chicken stock, cinnamon stick, and nutmeg; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.

3 Remove cinnamon stick and discard. Working in batches, puree soup in blender until smooth. Return to pot.

4 Add half and half and maple syrup and stir over medium-low heat to heat through. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cool soup slightly. Cover and refrigerate soup and celery leaves separately. Bring soup to simmer before continuing.) Ladle into bowls. Sprinkle with celery leaves.

Serves 6 to 8
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