Lunch En Blanco: Cauliflour Soup, Fresh Raw Ricotta+Curried Balsamic Vinegar

Feeling suddenly empty nest-ish now all our Hurricane refugees have decamped and cooking for two resumes. So I’ll cry into my lunch time glass of red wine (The detox starts tomorrow so stop judging, thanks) and eat my roasted cauliflower soup while trying to catch up on all the TV shows I missed during the blackout.

I bought fresh, raw ricotta at the farmers market yesterday and seeing as I plan to eat air for a few days to compensate for the butter laden weekend it needs to be used today. Ditto for the two rashers of bacon left in the fridge.

Because it’s going to be pureed I roughly chopped onion, celery, garlic and bacon and sauteed it all up until the bottom of the pan starts to get brown. When it does, I add a good splash of white wine and scrape up all the good stuff on the bottom.

Add bay leaves and a Parmesan rind.
Recently, Food and Wine magazine rated Pacific Organic Free Range Chicken Stock the best out of 17 popular organic brands. I rarely use stock anymore, but this one doesn’t make me gag. So I used some.

I added both left over roasted cauliflower and some fresh raw chopped into pieces. Obviously.

After a while (Remember I am not good with measuring) it looked like this (which is pretty ugly actually):

Ahhhh, did you spot the crouton? Yes I added a few freshly toasted croutons and let them get soft before blending with my handy dandy Immersion Blender.  (P.S. Don’t forget to take out the bay leaf and the parm rind because you’re shit out of luck if you puree up a bay leaf.)

Doctoring a cauliflower soup is where it really gets it’s flavor. I am not in favor of adding cream to a veggie soup to make it tasty. So roasting the veggies before hand or adding the juice of a fresh lime can really add depth without making the soup like dessert.

The real star of this show is the Curried Balsamic Vinegar I bought from Vervacious on a recent trip to Maine. It manages to Love, Honor and Obey all the other ingredients perfectly. Seriously, if this sounds at all like your cup of tea, order some. You won’t be disappointed.

I have this great kitchen gadget called Patient Husband who likes to do things like make croutons and homemade stock. So I got him out of the drawer and employed him to make these beautiful whole grain, seeded croutons.

Topped with the fresh ricotta, croutons and the amazing curried balsamic vinegar, I’m feeling better. Or it could be the wine. Whichever.

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