Cauliflower soup is good for more winter

If you missed it, let me fill you in on one of the current health-food crazes sweeping the Internet: cauliflower.

Food blogs and Pinterest boards will yield recipes for everything from mashed cauliflower that the author swears your kids will think is mashed potatoes to baked cauliflower pizza crusts.

I?d read enough posts extolling me that I wouldn?t be able to tell the difference between cauliflower and potatoes in many recipes that I decided to put it to the test with a very pretty cauliflower soup.

The experiment went well, but I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that I thought the soup was very light and tasty. The bad news is that I wasn?t fooled for a second into thinking I didn?t have a bowl of cauliflower in front of me.

Of course, I like cauliflower, so it didn?t phase me a bit (the man of the house was not quite as thrilled with the overall result as I was).

So, if you like cauliflower, I?d encourage you to give this a try. If you don?t, you might want to find another way to cut your calories.

This recipe comes originally from ?Cooking by Hand,? a book by Paul Bertolli. I found it online at http://food52.com/recipes/15247-paul-bertolli-s-cauliflower-soup.

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Cauliflower Soup

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, thinly sliced

1 head cauliflower, broken into florets

5 cups hot water, divided

Salt, to taste

Directions

Heat the olive oil in a heavy stockpot over low heat.

Add the onion and leave the heat low. Put a lid on the pot and ?sweat? the onion for about 15 minutes. You want it to soften but not brown. Stir the onions every few minutes as they sweat.

Add the cauliflower (Chop up the stem and add it, too. There?s no reason to waste it.), salt, and 1/2 cup water. Raise the temperature on the pot just slightly and put the lid back on. Let the cauliflower steam for another 15 minutes or until it is tender (mine took longer).

Add the other 4 1/2 cups of water.

Bring the pot up to a simmer and cook, uncovered for another 20 minutes.

After it is done, blend the mixture until it is completely smooth (you may have to do this in batches; I used my immersion blender for this step).

Let it stand for about 20 minutes to thicken. If it?s too thick, add a little water to thin it out. Reheat the soup and serve it with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and some freshly cracked black pepper.

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This reheats well out of the refrigerator if you have leftovers. I didn?t try freezing it, but I suspect you could do that, too.

If you?re ready to jump on the cauliflower bandwagon, give this soup a try, but don?t be fooled into thinking it?s a good substitute for good, old-fashioned taters. There?s just no replacing that starchy comfort, but this soup is pretty darn good, too.

When not helping husband Joey with newspaper work, Lindsey teaches speech, debate and forensics at Haven High School. She can be reached at lindseyclarion@gmail.com.

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