Monday, September 5, 2011

I cook for you ... and it's cauliflower soup

Sometimes it helps to stop and smell the roses, or in my case, to be grateful and thankful for the blessings in my life. I'll try not to wax on about it but I'm really grateful to The Boy when it comes to my cooking.

When I first got the idea that I wanted to learn how to cook (better), The Boy was supremely supportive. He did not quibble over the cost of the course or the time it took me away from him. In fact, he did not quibble at all. He just encouraged me to go ahead and do it.

Once I started the classes, he was all for me cooking food that he could match wines with. Then, when I decided to start cooking for the boys on a regular basis, he jumped right in and got excited about matching food with wines. He would regularly ask me what I'm cooking to see what wines he could pull out of the cellar for the meal.

He's been a great supporter too, telling friends and colleagues alike about my cooking (maybe a little too enthusiastic, since he told some people whom I didn't want knowing about the cooking ... ah well ...). He's also been generous with his praises and providing constructive feedback about what worked and what didn't. That said, he's super easy to please and to feed, so there hasn't been much negative feedback at all.

On top of that, he's also scouting out cooking supply stores, cookbook aisles in bookstores, hanging around patiently while I browse down aisles and aisles of cooking gadgets, gizmos, books and such.

So yeah, I'm dedicating an entire post to waxing lyrical over how wonderful The Boy is, but really, he deserves it. :-) I cook for you ...

Here's a RECIPE for a soup that I made for The Boy the other day. It's truffle cauliflower soup. The Boy was waxing lyrical over the soup. He called it "the best soup in the world" to which I demurred on the title, after which he claimed "the best cauliflower soup in the world". I don't think it's quite that level of greatness but it pleases me no end that The Boy is enthusiastic about my food.

  • 1 whole cauliflower, cut into pieces
  • 1 onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • Olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock, if you prefer)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Truffle oil
  • Parsley, finely chopped

  • Heat some olive oil in a large pot
  • Put in onions to sautee, after a few minutes add garlic and continue to sautee until onions are translucent
  • Add cauliflower and sautee for a few minutes until slightly cooked
  • Cover pot with lid and cook cauliflower for 5 or some minutes, until onions brown slightly
  • Pour in stock and bring to boil
  • Reduce heat to simmer, cover and simmer for 30 - 40 minutes
  • Turn off heat
  • Either in a food processor (let the soup cool a little if you are doing it this way) or with a stick blender, blitz the soup until it is a thick creamy consistency and there are no more chunks of cauliflower or onion
  • Return to heat and add salt and pepper to taste
  • Heat through and serve into bowls
  • Drizzle a swirl of truffle oil into the centre of the bowl and sprinkle with parsley to garnish
  • Serve and enjoy

This is about the size for cutting the cauliflower into

The soup turned out very tasty and quite rich. The cauliflower really came into it's own, particularly since it was a super fresh cauliflower that I bought at a farmer stall. I think the cauliflower came out of the garden patch that morning. Here's a few things to note:

This is about the size the onion should be chopped into

  • I was generous with the garlic when I said 4 cloves and that's because I like garlic - a lot! If you're not so keen on garlic, use less. However, I do think that the garlic added a lot of depth to the flavor, and the soup did not taste garlicky at all.
  • I was also extremely generous with the pepper so that there was a lot of heat from the pepper coming through. If you don't like the heat or having it too peppery, ease back on the pepper.
  • I used white finely ground pepper instead of black and instead of grinding it myself into the pot to season as I wanted to maintain that lovely, creamy texture of the soup without having black, flecky bits of pepper floating around in the soup. That's purely for aesthetics purposes only, so if you prefer freshly cracked pepper, go for it.
  • And finally, I prefer chicken stock to vegetable stock for the soup base - always do. I think that the chicken stock adds a depth to the flavor that you don't get from vegetable stock, so if you're not vegetarian, go with the chicken stock. If you are using a vegetable stock, try adding a vegetable stock booster. That will help with the flavor.

The Boy, barbarian that he is, crushed up some crackers into the soup. Sometimes, he can be so American!

What about you? Is there anyone in your life that you're especially grateful for, for whatever reason? Anyone who'd cause you to wax lyrical over? or just want to acknowledge because of the impact they have in your life? Have you said "thank you" or "I love you" lately to that special person? 

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  1. Sounds very elegant and tasty. Not too difficult either.

  2. It's a very simple soup to make. And yes, it's tasty.

  3. We have just reverted to white pepper for cooking (as well as black pepper) for the aesthetics as well. It feels wrong using ground pepper but it works!

    1. It has been working well for me and I'm finding I'm not losing anything in the flavor.