North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

'Creamy' Cauliflower, Tomato & Fennel Soup

 

October 5, 2016 | View PDF

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"Creamy' Cauliflower, Tomato & Fennel soup is a great way to warm up the family.

Makes about 1 gallon

When I think of winter...a warm creamy soup comes to mind. A great way to warm up the family is to make a big pot of homemade soup - comfort food at its best. This recipe is full of smooth and yummy wonderfulness. But you might think that a rich creamy soup is not very healthy, which is not true about this option. One of the great things about this "to die for creamy soup," is that I cut the fat to almost zero. This is done without compromising the creamy lusciousness, so thought I would pass on this secret to you.

The main focus of the recipe is the creamy cauliflower soup base. I am starting off by outlining the base portion of the recipe. Then I will follow with the reminder of the recipe that turns it into the Tomato-Fennel version. This portion of the recipe is where you can get creative! It's easy to turn this "base" into anything you desire. Such as a "creamy" red bell pepper soup, avocado-cilantro, Brussel sprouts and lemon, to a spinach-curry, or a straight and easy roasted garlic soup creation. The options are endless.

The recipe makes a large amount of soup base, which can be frozen for up to a year in smaller zip-lock bag portions, or used up in 10 days when stored in the refrigerator. All of these options are easy and simple, and very nutritious with low amounts of healthy coconut (or olive) oil. If you want a protein punch, I am suggesting a few options along with other garnishes. Salt the recipe to your preference.

Enjoy!

Step One - Make this easy soup base

Cauliflower Soup Base

2 tablespoons coconut oil or olive oil

3 medium sized yellow onions, rough chopped

3 stalks of celery, rough chopped

3 tablespoons garlic, chopped (fresh is best, but bottled chopped garlic is fine)

2 cups white or red wine, reduce by half

2 quarts low sodium chicken or vegetable stock, can be purchased or prepared

1 medium head of cauliflower, remove leaves, thinly sliced

Brown onions and celery in coconut oil. Add garlic and lightly cook until translucent. Add wine and reduce by half. Add chicken or vegetable stock.

Step Two - Make a variation of the soup. Get Crazy!

Here's the tomato-fennel variation

Once the base is reduced, add the following ingredients while simmering:

2 tablespoons fennel seeds, whole or crushed

8 each roma tomatoes, quartered or use a 28 ounce canned of diced tomatoes in juice

8 ounces mushrooms, sliced

2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce

(Salt may be needed) Add to your taste.

Simmer for about 20 minutes or until all ingredients are very soft. Let cool for about 30 minutes. Blend until very smooth. To adjust the thickness add more stock or water after it is blended. Salt to taste.

Garnish suggestions: This is where you can make it different every time you warm up the soup. I use one of these or a combination of any below:

Vegetarian

Sautéed sliced mushrooms, Parmesan cheese (fairly low fat), chopped scallions, chopped roasted peppers, chopped pico de gallo salsa, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, chia, hemp seeds, Saffron threads, chopped almonds, cilantro, chopped, basil, chopped shelled edamame, avocado, or spinach leaves

Protein

40z of shredded chicken, cooked raw baby shrimp (must simmer soup), shredded pork, carnitas, grass fed beef, cooked crab

 

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