The winter weather in Atlanta has been completely schizophrenic. We’ve had days of freezing temperatures, followed by days so sunny and warm that I found myself wandering around in tank tops and skirts and this week has been no exception. March has definitely come in like a lion. Earlier this week the daytime temperatures were in the 70s. Then last night we had storms, tornadoes, and a high today of 54 with a damp and bitingly cold wind. Brrr.
The chill has me craving something warm and comforting. I’m just about over heavy winter stews and I wasn’t in the mood for chili but I wanted food that made me feel snuggly and content without a whole lot of work. Something like a rich potato soup, but a little healthier. So I started scouring some of my favorite sites for recipes and I found Smitten Kitchen’s Silky Cauliflower Soup. It looked good, really close, but not quite what I wanted. So I started with that base and built my own version of a cauliflower and potato soup that can be dressed up or down as you like.
I wound up drizzling mine with a little meyer lemon olive oil (a product that I’ll do a review on here shortly) and some fresh ground black pepper. Served with a side salad of spinach, pear, and feta cheese, this made a filling and yummy dinner.
The soup is not quite “silky” – it’s impossible in my experience to get cauliflower to become silky smooth when pureed – but it’s rich and creamy with the sharp undertone of the parmesan cheese. It’s not as heavy as a creamy potato/cheese soup, but still comforting and warming on a drizzly, windy, damp spring day. I’m definitely going to be making this again. Next time I want to try adding some carrot and celery and maybe some different spices as well.
The recipe as I made it:
Cauliflower Potato Soup
- 1 head (approx 1.5 lbs prepared) cauliflower, cored and coarsely chopped (reserve a few florets for garnish if you want)
- 2 large(approx 1.5 lbs prepared) russet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2-4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- 4 cups chicken stock (plus 1 cup water if needed)
- 3/4 cup half and half or whole cream
- 3/4 cup (approx 78g) finely grated fresh Parmesan cheese (not the salty stuff in the green can)
Start by heating the olive oil in a large pot or dutch oven. Add in the onion and cook over low heat until just beginning to soften. Add the garlic and stir for a few mins.
Add the cauliflower and the potato, and pour over the chicken stock. You might want to add another cup of water just to cover the vegetables. Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer and cook for 40-50 mins.
Using a stick blender or a food mill or even a regular blender, puree the soup until it’s as smooth as you want it.
Add the cream and the Parmesan and salt to taste and stir well.
Serve with a drizzle of olive oil or a swirl of pesto for color and flavor.
Nutritional information (per 2 cup serving): Cals 191 | Fat: 8g | Carb: 24g | Fiber: 5g | Protein: 9g