I have begun experimenting with the many varied uses for cauliflower – we get a head or two delivered in our organic vegetable delivery every week. I have found that it is a wonderfully neutral base from which to build many different types of light but comforting dishes.
We have done cauliflower puree in place of mashed potatoes many times, we have used it in pastas, we have curried it and eaten it as a side with palak paneer (one of our favorite Indian dishes), and we have carmelized it with onions and raisins and eaten it as a side dish with ribs and pork roasts. All the ways we have eaten it have been equally delicious. This soup recipe is really nice and creamy and soothing. Easy to make and nice to have as a main dish with some bread or a grilled cheese sammy, or as a starter to a lovely meal.
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 1 onion coursely chopped
- 1 shallot coursely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves sliced
- one 2 lb head of cauliflower, cut into medium sized florets
- 4 thyme sprigs
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 quart chicken broth
- 4 cups water
- pinch of nutmeg freshly grated
- Truffle salt to taste
- grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese
Heat butter in dutch oven or deep enameled pan and add onions, shallots and garlic over medium heat, stirring occasionally – about 10 minutes. Add cauliflower, thyme, bay leaf and cook until cauliflower is barely firm – about 15 minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Boil until it has cooked down by about 1/3. Add water and stir – allow to simmer on medium heat for 30 minutes.
Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth and creamy – get rid of large chunks. You can also blend in a regular blender in two batches. If you wish to have a REALLY smooth texture, after blending, pour soup in batches through a fine mesh strainer and press solids through it with a spatula into a bowl. It will become very finely strained and will be smooth like a pudding texture. Pour back into pan and allow to warm before serving.
Sprinkle with truffle salt and cheese and garnish with diced sage or parsley.