It's come to my attention that the weather lately has been so uncertain, I don't know if it's going to rain or instantly become BBQ weather AKA drinking Rosé during the daytime AKA bikini season.
That last one puts me into a cold sweat.
I become paranoid.
I start thinking my cat is reading my diary.
Ok, that last one was a reference to Glee.
On to the warming meal!
For those of you who don't know, my sister and I are famous for creating "warming meals" and we even have our own thriving business.*
*if by business, you mean one day we got bored and created a firstname.lastname@example.org google account, then, yes, we do have a legitimate business.
Warming Meals can be defined as: any homemade meal that makes one feel that they are getting a hug. Said meal does NOT have to be warm in temperature, but it should warm your heart and you should share it with someone you care about. Do not serve a warming meal to someone you secretly hate. Every time you do that, the WM stock takes a major hit.
Past Warming Meals have included:
Bucatini Cacio e Pepe
Rigatonis (a satellite Rigatoni WM can be had at Palominos as well)
Chicken Caesar Salad with homemade croutons
Summer Corn Salad
Whole Wheat Pasta
As this indecisive spring weather continues, (is the phrase "indecisive spring weather" a double negative?) I decided to make a combination spring meal and cozy (fall?) desert.
Roasted Cauliflower/Broccoflower Soup and Almond Cake (see WM II post)
Start with a bunch of veggies! I have shallots, leeks and yellow potatoes in as a base for my soup. I chose cauliflower and broccoflower as my main components. Look at this guy below guy!! That crazy 'ol broccoflower. I have been wanting to cook one of these for a while... A broccoflower is a type of cauliflower, also called a "green cauliflower" but actually, the name "broccoflower" is trade marked. bahaha. It should not be confused with Romanesco Broccoli, which is more horned and WAY COOL looking.. You can see if you look close, the broccoflower has a tiny horn.
As a general rule for starting any soup, start by softening your base ingredients with olive oil and perhaps a knob of butter. The knob can be as big as a doorknob…or it can be a a more reasonable 2 tablespoons. I can't believe you were considering putting a doorknob sized portion of butter in this soup!
It roasts the cauliflower and the broccoflower, or it gets the hose again.
Now, combine the goodness into your pot!
For this recipe, I used the following:
2 leeks, cleaned and sliced thinly
3 shallots, sliced thinly
2 yellow potatoes, cut into small chunkers
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets and roasted
1 head broccoflower, ditto
6-7 cups chicken stock
dash of sherry vinegar
S&P to taste
'lil butter and a 'lil olive oil
I used a fancy immersion blender, but you can use a regular blender or a food processor to make as smooth or as rustic chunky as you would like. I opted for the rustic chunky, and I left a few whole pieces of cauliflower in for mouthfeel. Plus, it was really hard not to gobble all the roasted flowers…with their salt-pepper-olive oil crunchy bits.
A note about the color….if you want a pure pedigree soup of a more vibrant color (green or white) use broccoflower or cauliflower respectively. I, however, was confident in the flavors so I did not mind that it was an indecisive color of spring.
You like how I tied that phrase again in, don't you. hehehe.
Sprinkle with a rare salt, a turn of pepper, and drizzle with your finest oil. I used a coveted bottle of olive oil that I received as a gift last summer in Tuscany: oil made from the olive trees at Tenuta la Bandita. Some krispy fried shallots might be good on top or ideally, a drizzy of white truffle oil. Word.