the cold weather that blew in over the weekend had me looking for every possible way to keep warm. and what better way than soup? with a hearty soup you can get all your vegetables in one bowl and keep yourself warm and satisfied. plus, soups are excellent for experimenting. once you have the general technique down for various styles of soup, you can mix and match ingredients to your taste buds’ content.
take cauliflower, for example, which is the fn dish ingredient of the week. disguised in its seemingly bland appearance is a deep flavor and some wonderful health benefits. in fact, 1 cup of cauliflower contains about 90% of your recommended daily value of vitamin c. think about all that cold-fighting power!
but flavor is the thing that really gets me excited when i sit down to a steaming bowl of soup. the delicious taste of cauliflower mixes well with many other ingredients, from aged cheddar to currants and capers. this time i picked a partner that would complement the caulfilower’s smooth flavor and spice up the color palette – orange hokkaido squash. this gourd has a rich, bold flavor and it’s not very stringy, which makes it great for pureeing. the structure of the soup, with sauteed aromatics, vegetables, and broth, makes it easy to substitute your favorite winter vegetables. but i highly recommend giving this version a try. with the accompanying garnishes – bacon, crème fraîche, and parsley – this cauliflower concoction is not to be missed!
3 lb cauliflower, stemmed and cut into large sections
3 lb winter squash, peeled and cut into 1” cubes
1 large onion, cut into medium dice
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
6 slices turkey or pork bacon, cooked until crisp and diced (optional)
6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
8 tbsp. crème fraîche
1 cup minced parsley
1 tbsp. olive oil
salt and freshly ground white pepper
1. in a soup pot, sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until soft and translucent, 8-10 minutes.
2. add the squash and stock and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes.
3. add the cauliflower and return to a boil. then reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the squash and cauliflower are cooked through.
4. remove from heat and allow to cool for 15 minutes.
5. in a food processor or blender, purée all the solids in batches until very smooth, using just as much of the liquid as needed. then strain the remaining liquid to remove any sediment and add the puréed soup.
6. to serve, return the soup to medium heat until warmed through and season with salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste. garnish bowls with 1 tablespoon each of crème fraîche, bacon, and parsley.
take a look at the following blogs for more delicious cauliflower recipes:
The Sensitive Epicure: Cauliflower Souffle
Haute Apple Pie: Cauliflower and Chicken Gratin
CIA Dropout: Cauliflower Squash Soup With Creme Fraiche
Daily*Dishin: Tender Roasted Cauliflower
Virtually Homemade: Cumin Crusted Beef Tenderloin With Cauliflower Puree
What’s Gaby Cooking: Cumin Roasted Cauliflower
Thursday Night Dinner: Roasted Garlic and Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower
Cooking Channel: 4 Ways to Cook Cauliflower
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Painted Cauliflower
FN Dish: Roasted Cauliflower 5 Ways
Big Girls Small Kitchen: Cauliflower Soup With Sharp Cheddar and Thyme
Dishin & Dishes: Cauliflower Gratin