Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Something special happens when you roast vegetables……the sugars caramelize and the flavors intensify creating an entirely new flavor profile. I have been roasting vegetables for many years, and when I just want a simple side dish, I’ll toss my prepared vegetables with a little olive oil and seasonings and pop them into a very hot oven to roast. Some of my favorite vegetables to roast are broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and winter squash. I had a big bowl of leftover roasted cauliflower in the refrigerator this past week and decided to turn it into a creamy soup. I added in some sautéed onions and garlic, simmered it all in chicken broth, and then pureed the soup into a bowl of creamy goodness. I like to garnish my soups, especially creamy ones, as they can look a little boring without a little added something.

To garnish this soup, I fried up a little finely diced pancetta along with some coarse whole grain breadcrumbs to add texture and interest but you could garnish your soup with just about anything from a dollop of sour cream, to some chopped green onions or chives. You can puree your soup in a blender, food processor, or with a hand wand depending on what you have on hand. I left my soup quite thick, but feel free to add a little additional water or broth to thin your soup if you prefer.

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Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2013

Roasted Cauliflower Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1 Large Head of Cauliflower, or 8 Cups, Cut Into Florets
  • 4 Teaspoons Olive Oil, Divided
  • Salt & Pepper To Taste
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 3/4 Cup Chopped Onion
  • 4 Cups Chicken Broth
  • 1 Cup Water
  • 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream

Garnish:

  • 1/4 Cup Finely Chopped Pancetta
  • 1 Cup Whole Grain Bread, Cut Into Pea Size Pieces
  • 1/4 Cup Fresh Parsley Leaves

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Toss the cauliflower with 2 teaspoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Spread the cauliflower onto a baking sheet, and roast for 30 to 35 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly golden brown and tender.
  4. While the cauliflower is cooking, heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a frying pan and cook the pancetta over medium heat until lightly browned, about 4 minutes.
  5. Add the breadcrumbs, stirring to mix with the oil and pancetta, then cook, stirring often until the crumbs are crisp and golden, about 5 minutes.
  6. Season with salt and pepper, toss with the parsley and set aside.
  7. Heat the remaining oil in a saucepan, and cook the onions and garlic over medium low heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
  8. Add the broth and water to the onion mixture and bring to a boil.
  9. Add the cauliflower to the saucepan, and reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.
  10. Taste, and adjust salt and pepper as needed.
  11. Add the heavy cream to the pot and then puree until smooth and creamy in batches.
  12. Return the soup to the pot and keep warm.
  13. To serve, ladle soup into individual bowls, then top with a couple of tablespoons of the garnish.