January 8, 2015

Cauliflower and Greens Soup


Cauliflower and Greens Soup

And thus begins the bleaker side of winter. Yeah, it's cold. Yeah, it's dark. Yeah, my feet are freezing...all the time except when I'm in a hot bath. But it's not so bad. We burrow in, watch TV, read, chase the dog around the house to wear him out, wear layers of homey comfort and "forget" to shave our legs (fur = warmth). And of course cook, bake, eat and repeat.




This is a smoky soup that's hearty, warming and full of healthy things. It tastes rich (more stew than soup) and the greens brighten it up—I like them still crisp which you can achieve by adding them at the end and just heating them until they wilt slightly. Any sturdy green will work (kale, mustard greens, swiss chard). I might stay away from spinach though because it wilts so thoroughly. I threw in some chicken left over from a rotisserie bird. The original recipe called for chunks of sausage and I'm sure that would be good too. A dollop of plain yogurt and a few drops of lemon juice brighten the whole thing up. Such a good recipe from Bogre at Food52.

Cauliflower and Greens Soup

Makes about 10 cups

1 medium head cauliflower
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon kosher salt
5 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced thin
Pinch red pepper flakes
5 cloves garlic, minced
8 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup parsley, chopped finely
4 cups (packed) greens - Lacinato kale
1-2 cups shredded cooked chicken or chunks of sausage (optional)

Garnishes
Plain yogurt
Lemon juice
Cilantro
Smoked paprika

Preheat oven to 450ยบ
Toss cauliflower with 3 tablespoons olive oil, paprika, cumin and salt and spread out on a sheet pan. Roast for 20-30 minutes until brown.

Meanwhile, saute onion in 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat in a large saucepan/stockpot. When onions are translucent and a bit brown add garlic and pepper flakes. Stir for a minute until fragrant. Add chicken stock and roasted cauliflower, making sure to scrape up all brown bits and any fond from the bottom of the sheet pan. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for an hour. Puree using an immersion blender or in batches in a regular blender. Return to pot and add greens, parsley and cooked chicken or sausage (if using) and simmer until greens wilt a bit but still have a little crunch (5 minutes). Serve with chopped cilantro, plain yogurt and a few drops of lemon juice.
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