Yesterday was a LONG day. We ended up ordering take out after work (General Tso’s for him and Thai Chicken Curry for me!) and snuggling on the couch watching Macgyver until it was time for bed. It was just one of those days! Thankful for a good night’s sleep and a hot cup of coffee right now. It’s a beautiful day where I am – crisp, breezy and the sun is juuust starting to peek through the morning clouds. Choosing to focus on the blessings each day has to offer – God is just too good!
Now, onto the recipe! All I can say is: YUM! I kinda played around in the kitchen with this one – adding a little of this and a little of that, until I got the flavors right. Lucky for you, I actually remembered to write down all of the changes I made this time! So yay for that! Y’all, this soup is delicious. I have to admit, my husband was a little skeptical at first (“Cauliflower soup? Like an entire thing of soup made from just cauliflower??”), but even he had seconds! It’s perfect for the cold weather that’s coming (and already has come for some of you!) – warm, creamy, filling. Sigh. There is nothing like a hot bowl of soup on a chilly evening! Am I right? Or am I right?
CAULIFLOWER LEEK(serves 4)
- 1 head cauliflower
- 3 leeks (they have a mild onion-y flavor)
- 1 can organic chicken broth
- 1 medium-sized shallot (another onion)
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 cup raw, unsalted cashews
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- 1/8 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 TBSP salt (+ or – depending on your tastes)
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
- BACON (it deserves to be capitalized, don’t you think?)
Alright – I’m about to share something that will change your LIFE! Okay, maybe not your life, but definitely the way you cook Paleo. Ever wonder how the heck you’re supposed to substitute the cream in various recipes? Such as soup, Indian dishes, etc? Well, look no further! And watch real close – cuz it’s like magic.
Fill a medium-sized sauce pan with water and add your cashews. Bring it to a boil, then turn the heat off, cover and let sit for about 30 minutes.
Pour the water from the pan into a bowl or measuring cup and SET ASIDE. DO NOT GET RID OF THE LIQUID! Then, add the cashews and about 1/2-1 cup of the liquid to your Vitamix (or some other high powered blender) and puree until it becomes a creamy sauce (about 30 seconds). TA DA!! You have your cream base. And you can literally use it for anything since cashews are essentially flavorless. You. Are. Welcome.
See? Creamy goodness.
You can leave the cashew cream in the blender since you’ll be adding to it later!
Since you’ll have 30 minutes while the cashews are soaking, preheat your oven to 400 and cut up your cauliflower into pieces like this:
Drizzle with olive oil!
Add the 4 cloves of garlic (in their skin) to the pan and bake at 400 for 25 minutes or until your cauliflower is tender and looks like THIS:
Meanwhile, rinse the leeks (they tend to have a bit of dirt in the folds) then slice ’em up and dice the shallot.
Use the white and light green end (the bottom half of the leek!)
Cook in a non-stick pan with a little bit of olive oil until tender and set aside.
Love the colors!
Lay out your bacon (I did 3 strips each because.. well… we love bacon) on a cookie sheet lined with foil and bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes or until your bacon is the desired level of doneness.
Come to mama.
Add the cooked leeks and shallots to the cashew cream (still in the blender) and puree. We pureed in spurts, mainly because we wanted to keep some of the texture (runny soup just doesn’t sound appetizing, ya know?!). Transfer the mixture to a medium-sized pot. Next, add your roasted cauliflower and garlic (remove the outer shell after roasting) to the blender, along with the chicken broth and puree it on high until completely blended.
Once blended, transfer the entire mixture to the pot with the leeks and cashew cream and stir together. Add all of the spices (rosemary, paprika, thyme, salt, garlic powder and red pepper flakes) along with 1/2 cup-1 cup of water. The water will help smooth out the soup – I found it was WAY too thick before the water, but to each his own. I would start out with about 1/2 of a cup and then add more until it’s the texture you’re looking for.
Perfect soup – flavorful, creamy, thick!
I crumbled two of the pieces of bacon and stirred them into our bowls (it was like hitting the jackpot every time we got some in a bite!) and then topped it with the 3rd piece of bacon and a tiny sprinkle of rosemary.
The finished product!
So what are you waiting for!? Go grab the ingredients, make yourself a nice big pot ‘o soup and cuddle up with a cozy blanket and full bowl of goodness- fall is upon us! So why not take advantage of it? :)
Let me know what you think!