Grilled Cauliflower Soup
One of my favorite vegetables is cauliflower. Since I’ve been making a major effort to eat less meat, I've been discovering how versatile it is as an ingredient. Surely it can't only be for the creamy cauliflower and broccoli vegetable side that we enjoy on a Sunday. So, because it's been so cold, I decided to make grilled cauliflower soup. As daunting as it may sound, it was actually so easy and the results were tasty and rewarding. All the raw ingredients are grilled in the oven, then pulverised in a pot with some veggie stock and you have a tasty, creamy soup to warm up any night a cold front may send your way. I normally like to make a pan toastie to accompany my soup when I decide to have soup. Oh, and I added a handful of baby peas, because I had some and I like that they add something to chew on, texture. They are not part of the recipe, just a personal preference. I think some bacon bits would also work.
- 1 large head cauliflower
- ½ cup of olive oil (or any cooking oil really)
- Fine sea salt (to taste)
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic (whole)
- 3 Cups of Vegetable stock (you can also use chicken stock)
- 50g of butter (salted or unsalted)
- The juice of half a lemon (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional but makes a difference in taste)
- A sprig of fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp of ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Line a baking tray with some foil or baking paper
- Wash and cut the cauliflower off the score into smaller chunks. I prefer to put these in a bowl. Add the garlic cloves whole, half the chopped onion, add the rosemary leaves and toss with ⅔ (two thirds) of the olive oil until lightly and evenly coated in oil. Arrange the cauliflower along with the garlic and onions in a single layer and sprinkle lightly with salt. Bake until the cauliflower is tender and caramelized on the edges, 25 to 40 minutes depending on your oven, tossing halfway.
- While the cauliflower is still in the oven, warm the remaining olive oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add the remaining onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and turning translucent.
- Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant then add the 2 cups of the stock. You want to leave some to thin out the soup to your liking.
- Transfer the cauliflower to the pot. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 20 minutes or so to give the flavors time to cook through..
- Once the soup is done cooking, remove the pot from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes. Then, carefully transfer the hot soup to a blender, working in batches if necessary. You can also use a hand held blender.
- Blend until smooth. Add the lemon juice and nutmeg (both are optional) and blend again. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Make sure it’s properly salted!
- This can serve up to four people, but for me I freeze the other three portions for another day. It can keep for about 2 to 3 months in the freezer.