Posts Tagged ‘Soup’

Purple Cauliflower Soup

Isn’t this a gem?  That’s one of the most beautiful vegetables you’ll find anywhere.  I don’t know how broccoli and cauliflower get such bad raps, because they are really tasty, very easy to prepare, very versatile, and very healthy (maybe that’s the problem).  And when purple!

We vacillated between making a pasta dish with little roasted purple florets or a soup, and I’m sure you know which won out.  In truth, the soup wasn’t quite the color we were hoping for, but it was purple nonetheless, a nice companion to the orange, green, and red soups already in our repertoire.

As with any soup of this nature we started with sauteed onions and celery.  In the oven we roasted the cauliflower (cut into small florets) and garlic, tossed with oil and salt.  Add the roasted vegetables to the sauteed vegetables, blend by whatever means you have available (which may require adding broth at this point).  Add remaining broth (in total we used about a quart) and simmer.  Oh, and one more thing!  We added lemon juice to our soup, and we discovered that the lemon juice reacted with something in there to produce a very vibrant, almost fluorescent, purplish pink, which unfortunately got washed out when stirred.

And what to do with the cauliflower greens?  Sautee them in oil with some salt, pepper, and lemon juice.  Cauliflowery in taste, but definitely greens.


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Christmas Day Soup

We had anticipated hosting Christmas for months, and correspondingly we had been planning our menu for almost as long.  It was an intimidating task but also an enjoyable way to count down to hosting our first Christmas as a married couple.  The final, executed menu was a 9 lb slow-roasted pork shoulder, mashed purple and sweet potatoes with kale ribbons, brussel sprouts with shaved Romano, savory-citrusy cranberry sauce, New York style cheesecake, and butternut squash soup.

I’m going to talk about the soup because I’m bitter about how the pork turned out.  Sure, everybody loved it and thought it was great.  Even the people who know that after cooking for 12 hours it still wasn’t done.  But I didn’t like it at all, and I don’t know if it’s just a mental thing, but either way, I’m off of pork for a while (except maybe I’ll cook ribs again soon).

There was a bit of debate over whether to serve the soup first (per Western tradition) or last (nod to Chinese tradition), but given that the rest of the meal (though arguably not the occasion itself) was Western, we settled on soup as a first course. This soup can be modified a number of ways — with curry, sage, or coconut milk. Add in some quinoa or brown rice and you have a full meal. Chopped nuts might also be a good addition, along with some lemon or orange zest.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

1 butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces
1 quart chicken broth
3 stalks celery
1 onion
salt and pepper to taste
curry powder or sage if desired

Preheat oven to 400F. When butternut squash is cleaned, peeled, and cut, place in Pyrex baking dish. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper. Roast for ~1 hour until squash is very tender.

Chop celery and onion into small pieces. Saute with olive oil in bottom of a large saucepan or stock pot. Add butternut squash. Remove vegetables from heat and cool.

When cooled, puree vegetables in blender or Magic Bullet with enough chicken broth to cover.* Transfer vegetables and broth back into saucepan or stock pot. Add the remaining chicken broth. Bring soup to a boil, then turn down to a simmer for 20 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, sage or curry powder to taste.

*Note: If you don’t have a blender or a Magic Bullet or even an immersion blender, cut the vegetables into very small pieces initially, and you’ll have a slightly chunkier soup.

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