Mill's Tavern

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Small Bites: A local chef’s healthful comfort soup

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Mill’s Tavern’s Edward Bolus’ shows you how to prepare Coconut Carrot Ginger Soup

February calls for soup.

It’s warm, comforting and good for you.

At least this Coconut Carrot Ginger Soup from Mill’s Tavern is. It has fresh ginger, coconut milk, carrots and not a lot of fat. Executive chef Edward Bolus shared the recipe as the latest of The Journal’s Small Bites cooking videos.

You’ll need a box grater or food processor for shredding the carrots. By shredding them and not just cutting them, they will cook faster, he said.

He also wants home cooks to use their blenders to whip up the soup.

“It gives it a nice mouthfeel,” he said.

Bolus, a native of Pennsylvania, arrived at Mill’s Tavern from Johnson & Wales University in 2006 with degrees in the Culinary Arts and Food Service Management. He likes to grow his own herbs and make his own spices. He keeps a garden, from which he cooks, in the back parking lot at Mill’s in the summer.

Bolus oversees a menu that offers local and seasonal ingredients in innovative ways. He currently has bacon-wrapped venison loin with a pistachio cocoa nib crust on the menu, served with salt-roasted beets. His pan-seared halibut is made with a nori seaweed pesto and served with malanga-root vegetables. He’s also excited about his winter vegetarian dish of Sorghum and Winter Vegetable Stuffed Savoy Cabbage Rolls. Sorghum is an ancient grain.

Bolus also likes the wine pairings on the winter menu, which includes an Alsace-style wine to go with his Alsatian Braised Chicken with Lemon Thyme Spaetzle.

In addition to his executive chef duties, Bolus competes in oyster-shucking competitions regionally and has qualified to compete at the national level. He is regarded as among the top oyster shuckers, taking second place in the 85 Main Shuck-Off, against the world champion, in Connecticut. He resides in Providence.

Details: Mill’s Tavern, 101 North Main St., Providence, (401) 272-3331, Hours: 5-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 4-9 p.m. Sunday.

The Journal’s Small Bites videos are created in collaboration with the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau. They are shot in a demonstration kitchen at Hope & Main, the food-business incubator in Warren. Find this video and all cooking videos at

Coconut Carrot Ginger Soup

1/3 cup butter

2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced

1 onion, chopped

½ tablespoons salt

1½ pounds carrots, shredded

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons brown sugar

½ tablespoon pepper

½ teaspoon ground coriander

1 quart vegetable stock

1 cup coconut milk

Juice of two limes

In a large pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Once melted, add the ginger, onion and salt. Sauté for 10 minutes or until the ginger and onions have almost caramelized.

Add in the carrots and cook for about 15 minutes, until the carrots start to brown but are not burned.

Add the nutmeg, brown sugar, pepper and coriander and cook for another minute.

Add in the vegetable stock, coconut milk and lime juice. Simmer for about five minutes.

Puree in a blender until completely smooth. Don’t overload blender. Do in two batches. Check seasoning and add as desired.

Serves two