Monday, March 31, 2014

Meatless Monday - Cauliflower Soup

Growing up in a Chinese family, dinner would always end with a big bowl of soup. But I was never a big fan of soup and too impatient to wait for the soup to cool to a drinkable temperature, would often leave the bowl sitting out for so long a membrane of fat would form on top of it. 


Ever since I moved to the States, my mom has been urging me to make soup for myself. And this past weekend, I finally heeded her advice and followed this recipe for a hearty, rich, cumin cauliflower soup paired with a side of focaccia and oozing raclette.  The perfect cure for a cold winter's night or a dreary rainy Sunday. 

The best part about this? Another meatless meal!

Tip - Have leftover soup? Pour into an ice tray and freeze into cubes for later use. (This is best for storing stock to use at a later date).  

[Recipe after the jump]

Roasted Cauliflower Soup with Cumin
serves 4 to 6
adapted just slightly from Food and Wine Magazine February 2014
1 large head cauliflower (1 1/2 to 2 pounds), halved, cored, and cut into 1 1/2-inch florets
1 heaping teaspoon cumin seeds
1 heaping teaspoon curry powder
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
salt and crushed red pepper flakes
1 small onion, diced (about 1 cup)
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 quick meal
4 cups chicken broth, vegetable broth, or water
1/4 cup plain yogurt
Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Spread cauliflower florets on a large rimmed baking sheet and sprinkle with cumin seeds and curry powder.  Drizzle with 3 tablespoons olive oil and toss to coat.  Season with a big pinch of salt and crushed red pepper flakes.  Place in the oven and roast until just tender, about 25 minutes.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the last tablespoon of olive oil.  Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and browned, about 5 minutes.  Add the minced garlic and cook for 1 minute more.  Add the roasted cauliflower to the pot along with the butter, bay leaf, and broth (or water). Simmer over medium heat until liquid has reduced some and the cauliflower is very tender, about 15 minutes.  Pick out and discard the bay leaf.
In a blender, carefully puree the soup in two or three batches until very smooth.  Return the soup to the saucepan and stir in the yogurt.
Rewarm over medium heat, adding more water to create a thinner consistency if you’d like.  Season with olive oil, salt, and pepper for serving.
Soup can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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