15 January 2010

To-die-for Cauliflower Soup

I'm a huge fan of The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond. I started reading her blog for the love story she wrote about her and her cowboy hubby, but I stuck around for the recipes and photos. I originally found today's recipe on her website, but what I'm posting here is my modification of her recipe.  The best part about this soup is it is both a cream and a broth soup, so it has all the creamy richness of a cream soup without being so heavy you still feel it two hours later in your tummy.

And don't give me any business about not liking cauliflower. The taste in the soup is super mild and it's a lot lighter weight than potato. I've tried the recipe with potato instead of cauliflower and it's good but just not good enough. Also, if you have the ingredients handy this only takes about half an hour or less. Dinner in a hurry, without the hassle!

Cauliflower Soup

1 stick butter
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced (honestly, I buy bags of baby carrots instead of whole carrots. This works well with  about 8 or so of those.)
1 large head of cauliflower, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon dill
1 quarts chicken broth
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup milk
salt and pepper, to taste

Chop the onions and carrots very fine. It's especially fast if you have one of these. In a big four quart pot melt 4 tablespoons butter, half the stick. Add the onion and carrots cook for a few minutes, or until it starts to turn brown. Add cauliflower and dill and stir to combine. Cover and cook over very low heat for 15 minutes. (Ok, truth here, I almost always use dill even if the recipe calls for something else. It's personal preference. The original recipe called for 2 tbs parsley and if you like that yucky stuff, you can use that instead.)

After 15 minutes, pour in chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer.

In a medium saucepan, melt the other half stick of butter. Put the cornstarch in the butter and whisk until combined, then add cream. Whisk till thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup milk.

Add mixture to the simmering soup, stir well. Check seasoning (ie, taste it!) and add more salt or pepper if necessary. Let simmer on low until ready to serve.

If you are the privileged one that gets to eat the leftovers, this soup is even better the next day or the day after that (if there's any left at all). It's hard to believe, but it's true. This soup is so hearty you don't even need meat in it to make a meal, but totally feel free to add a can of canned chicken to it if you want some extra protein in a hurry. It tastes fantastic both ways. Also, I like to add cheese to it sometimes. Drop some grated cheddar in, like half a cup, if you feel like it. Enjoy!

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