Cauliflower is a rediscovered vegetable in my life. As a child, my mom mixed it with broccoli and covered it with cheese sauce. I don’t remember particularly liking or not liking it but I do know that the cheese sauce made it an edible vegetable. Because my husband isn’t a fan, I just never thought to buy cauliflower and make anything with it.
Thanks again to my weekly produce delivery, our horizons have been broadened. My leek from last week’s box and the small, dainty head of cauliflower from this week’s box seemed to make friends in the crisper drawer so I decided to let them stay together.
I glanced at a few cauliflower leek soups online and threw together a basic pureed soup. It was flavorful but I wanted to add a little something and due to my lack of familiarity with cooking this vegetable, I wasn’t sure what. Just then, a little synapse fired and my memory brought to me a hazy vision of roasted cauliflower with mustard vinaigrette, which was enjoyed and reported by the super-star blogger Molly.
Mustard seemed like just what the soup could use. A spoon of ol’ Grey Poupon and some coarsely ground pepper spiced it up enough to stimulate my taste buds without covering up the subtle and delicious cauliflower-leek flavors. Although I didn’t have time or ingredients to make it, I think this would be delicious with a brie and pear panini or brie and green apple sandwich on a crusty white bread.
Cauliflower Leek Soup with Mustard
3 Tablespoons butter
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 head cauliflower
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1/2 cup cream or milk
1 teaspoon stone ground mustard
coarsely ground pepper
Chop off unusable green ends of leek. Cut in half and chop the leek. Melt butter in a soup pan. Add the leek and garlic and cook about 3 minutes until fragrant and slightly transparent. Cut cauliflower in small chunks and add to the pan, stirring for 1 minute. Add the broth. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and cook until cauliflower is very tender but not mushy (15-20 minutes). Turn off heat and let cool slightly. Use an immersion blendor or a regular blender to puree the soup. I keep mine with a few chunks for some texture. Stir in cream or milk. Add mustard, salt and pepper adjusting as you like for taste.