But cauliflower is wonderful as a soup. Soup is probably my favorite iteration of the otherwise insipid vegetable. Although, as I have mentioned about other vegetables, cauliflower also responds really well to roasting. So why not make a soup out of roasted cauliflower? Genius, I tell ya. This soup doesn't look like much (I admit it- that's not the most appealing food photo ever - we can blame it equally on the cauliflower and my photography skills), but it is wonderful. And like the best soup recipes, it has a relatively short list of ingredients and only needs a little bit of time and love to come out just right.
Roasted Cauliflower and Leek Soup
Adapted from Not Without Salt
1 medium head cauliflower, pulled apart into chunks
1 large leek, rinsed and cleaned, white part cut into thumb-size slices
4 celery stalks, cut into thumb-size slices
freshly ground pepper
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1 medium-size potato, diced
1 tsp thyme leaves
2 bay leaves
pinch of chili flakes
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 can coconut milk
Optional toppings: chili salt, parmesan, fresh chives or green onion, croutons, crumbled bacon
1. Preheat oven to 400 F / 200 C.
2. Spread cauliflower, leek, and celery on a baking pan, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper.
3. Roast for 45 minutes to one hour, until vegetables are tender and there is some deep browning on the cauliflower.
4. In a large stock pot, heat about 2 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the onions for approximately 5 minutes, until transparent. About 1 minute before the end of the onions sautéing, throw in the garlic.
5. Add the roasted vegetables, potatoes, thyme, bay leaves, chili flakes, stock, coconut milk, and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 10 minutes until potatoes are tender.
6. Puree soup with an immersion blender (you might want to get one with a little more oomph than mine- it's not the smoothest of purees).
7. Serve with your chosen toppings.