Need a little something different and elegant - a little rustic? This soup is the answer. It is thickened with potatoes, not flour, and is hearty enough to serve as a luncheon main course or starter for your next dinner party. Why? The milky, sweet, nutty flavor of cauliflower is a nice change from stronger-flavored vegetables.
Even though it lacks chlorophyll, cauliflower has plenty of other nutrients including vitamin C (91.5% of the DV), folate and dietary fiber. Cauliflower is even a good source of omega-3 fatty acids.
Look for tightly packed heads with no brown spots
1 large head white cauliflower with leaves
2 medium potatoes (about one pound/450g)
1 handful dandelion leaves (or fresh celery leaves)
1 small onion, chopped
2 cups/500mls vegetable stock (water or chicken stock is fine)
1 tablespoon/30ml Italian seasoning
2 cups/500mls cauliflower water
salt and white pepper, to taste (black pepper is fine)
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 - 1 cup/125-250mls cream or milk (regular or vegan is fine), optional
Wash and trim the cauliflower, keeping the pale-green inner leaves that cling to the head.
Separate the head into flowerets and cook in a large pot of salted boiling water for 3-4 minutes.
Drain the cauliflower, reserving 2 cups/500mls of the cooking water.
Wash, pare and dice the potatoes. Put the potatoes, onion, dandelion leaves (or celery leaves) in a pot.
Add the broth (or water), wine, and cauliflower water and bring to a simmer.
Season to taste with salt and white pepper as well as the Italian seasonings.
Cook on a slow heat until the potatoes are tender, then add the cauliflower and simmer until the cauliflower is very tender.
Puree the soup, then return it to a clean sauce pan and heat through.
Stir in the cream if you choose.
Serve with fresh croutons.