Despite all my efforts, I caught an upper respiratory infection this past week.
My mother seems to think I'm too cautious -- that I am too focused on destroying surrounding germs and bacteria that I never give my body a chance to learn to fend them off. She has a point but I think I got sick because a cashier coughed in my grocery bag! Eww!
Yesterday, Ed gladly went to the market to pick up a few ingredients that I had written down for him: cauliflower, leek, and onion. With those ingredients and instructions from America's Test Kitchen, I made the creamiest, most velvety cauliflower soup.
Now, grab your scarf and hat and head to the market and pick up the ingredients for this soup. You won't be disappointed! As for me, I'm heading back to my room to bury myself under the covers...
Adapted from America's Test Kitchen Season 14
1 head cauliflower
8 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
1 leek, white and light green parts only, halved and sliced thinly
1 small onion, halved and sliced thinly
Salt and pepper
4 1/2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon sherry vinegar
Chopped fresh chives for garnish
Pull off outer leaves of cauliflower. Using paring knife, cut around core to remove; thinly slice core and reserve. Cut 1 cup of 1/2-inch florets from head of cauliflower; set aside. Cut remaining cauliflower crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices.
Melt 3 tablespoons butter in large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add leek, onion, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt; cook, stirring frequently, until leek and onion are softened but not browned, about 7 minutes.
Increase heat to medium-high; add 4 1/2 cups water, sliced core, and half of sliced cauliflower; and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Add remaining sliced cauliflower, return to simmer, and continue to cook until cauliflower is tender and crumbles easily, 20 minutes longer.
While soup simmers, melt remaining 5 tablespoons butter in 8-inch skillet over medium heat. Add reserved florets and cook, stirring frequently, until florets are golden brown and butter is browned, 6 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and use slotted spoon to transfer florets to small bowl. Toss florets with vinegar and season with salt to taste. Pour browned butter in skillet into small bowl and reserve for garnishing.
Process soup in blender until smooth, about 45 seconds. Return pureed soup to pan and return to simmer over medium heat and season with salt to taste. Serve by garnishing individual bowls with browned florets, drizzle of browned butter, and chives and seasoning with pepper to taste.