Flavor, flavor, flavor - that's the first thing that comes to mind when I think about this soup. Then I think about how I can hide it in the fridge so I won't have to share it with anyone. Shame on me.
Let's begin by sauteing cauliflower, onions, garlic, and a little kosher salt in extra virgin olive oil until the cauliflower begins to soften and everything caramelizes a bit. This is going to add a lot of flavor to the soup.
Yes - look at those yummy caramelized veggies, and even better, the all that yummy golden brown goodness stuck to the pan (technical term: 'fond'). Oh, I wish you could smell my house right now.
Tip: keep a little water or chicken stock close by so you can add a splash or two to prevent burned spots if needed.
Time to get all that yummy brown goodness (fond) off the pan and into the soup. Do that by 'deglazing' the pan with chicken stock. You can use store bought stock, but homemade is so much better. The difference is remarkable.
You have made homemade chicken stock, haven't you? If you haven't, it's really, really easy. CLICK HERE to see my simple step-by-step tutorial. I'm telling you, the stuff is liquid gold!
Okay, pour the chicken stock into the pan and use a wooden spoon to loosen the fond. It will basically dissolve into the stock. Note the color of the chicken stock at this point.
And here's the color of the stock just a couple of minutes later. See how much darker it is? You can practically taste all the flavor already, can't you?
Cover the pan and simmer gently for about 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes turn off the heat and carefully ladle all the liquids and solids into a blender.
I'm sharing this photo just so you can see how well the deglazing process dissolved the layer of fond on the bottom of the pan. It always amazes me.
Before we blend the soup, we need to add the last few ingredients - ground black pepper, heavy cream, and freshly grated parmesan cheese. Are you drooling yet?
But don't go too fast. Blend slowly until the soup reaches the consistency you like. I like it to be smooth, but still maintain a little texture.
I serve with some homemade croutons, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, and a sprinkle of freshly chopped chives. This soup is so incredibly good. I hope you'll give it a try soon.
Cream of Cauliflower Soup
makes 4-6 servings
- 2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 6 whole cloves of garlic, peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups chicken stock (try my homemade)
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- extra virgin olive oil
- freshly chopped chives
- In a 5-quart heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat, saute onions, garlic, cauliflower, and salt in olive oil, stirring often, until caramelized. This should take about 15 minutes.
- Add chicken stock and scrape up all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Lower heat, cover pan, and simmer gently for about 30 minutes.
- Transfer everything from the pan into a blender jar.
- Add cheese, cream, and pepper; blend on low until desired consistency is reached.
- Pour into serving bowls and garnish with croutons, olive oil, and chives.