I hosted meal a few days ago. All my guests had a lovely time sharing a meal and inspired conversation. The food was delicious.
It helped that my friend Jim was there, with his amazing ability to get everyone talking and laughing, in his really sweet and unassuming way. Thank you, Jim!
My usual cauliflower soup is puréed. I was craving a chunkier soup, with texture and a lighter spring flavor.
This soup has only a handful of ingredients, so it is important to get the most flavor out of them. One way to do do this is to lightly sauté the onions for a very long time, without letting them brown. I let these cook for over an hour. Patience is a characteristic of a balanced liver, and it’s spring, liver/gall bladder season, a time when liver imbalances tend to show up more readily.
Feel free to use your own vegetable broth, but make sure it’s a very neutral flavored one so it doesn’t overpower the light cauliflower flavor. I would recommend a homemade broth with only onion, carrot and celery. Leave the salt out of your broth as well and just salt at each stage of making the soup.
I used a store-bought broth when making this soup because I knew it would save me some time and give me the flavor I wanted. The only store-bought broth I use is Imagine Vegetarian Low Sodium No-Chicken Broth. It has a good clean flavor and no tomatoes.
I made deep-fried croutons and parsley oil for a garnish. The instructions will come another day. I just wanted to get this soup to you.
1 medium onion, diced small
2-3 tsp olive oil
a few pinches good quality sea salt
4 cups (1 box) Imagine Vegetarian Low Sodium No-Chicken Broth
1 medium head cauliflower
2-3 tsp chickpea miso (or sweet white miso), I like South River Brand
1. Place a large soup pot, with a heavy bottom, on low-medium heat. When the pot is warm, add the oil. Then add the onion. You want the onions to sizzle slightly, but you don’t want them to brown, so watch them carefully. Stir frequently, especially at the beginning. As soon as the onions start becoming translucent add a pinch or two of sea salt. Sauté the onions at least 30 minutes, longer if you wish. If the onions start sticking or browning, you can add a little more oil or a few tablespoons of the broth.
2. While the onions are cooking, prepare the cauliflower. Cut the head of the cauliflower into small, bite-size florets. Cut the tender parts of the stems into small chunks. Set aside.
3. When the onions have sautéed for 30-60 minutes, add the broth and water. Increase the temperature to bring to a boil and then turn the heat down to simmer.
4. Add the cauliflower. If you are using your own salt-free broth, you can add a few more pinches of sea salt at this time. You can also add a little more water if it looks like the soup is going to be too thick. Simmer until the florets are almost soft.
5. Spoon the miso into a small bowl. Add a little of the soup broth and mix well before adding back to the soup. Take care to only simmer the soup gently after the miso is added.
6. Remove from heat. Use an immersion blender to partially puree the soup, leaving it fairly chunky.
7. Taste and adjust for salt, adding a little more miso if necessary.
Garnish Ideas: deep-fried croutons, parsley oil, fresh herbs, lemon, gremolata, good quality olive oil.