Tag Archives: cauliflower

Cauliflower Soup with Parmesan Dumplings

This is going to be a love it or hate it recipe! Cauliflower and parmesan are both strong flavours on their own but bring them together and you get a deep roasted richness with a kick from the black pepper. I have never made cauliflower soup before, but I have eaten the vegetable many times in my mother’s Indian food and my father’s Italian food. Back in December I was inspired by the Hairy Bikers to bring the British cauliflower back into fashion. You may have seen my Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry recipe, but at the time I also vowed to try and make my own soup with the beautiful, cheap and underrated vegetable.

Like most of my recipes, this totally reflects my cooking style. This is a cheap, nutritious and easy recipe which can be made in advance. You can also easily adapt this recipe if you don’t like certain ingredients. For example, feel free to use much less black pepper if you’re not a fan. Use pecorino or gruyère for the dumplings if you don’t like parmesan. *If you prefer a softer dumpling, use white bread; personally I prefer brown.

This makes a delicious starter or light meal.

Cauliflower Soup with Parmesan Dumplings

Serves: 4-6 as a starter
Takes: 1 hr 15 mins

Ingredients:

1 Cauliflower (medium-large), washed and cut up into florets
Leaves of 1 cauliflower, sliced
1 white onion, peeled and diced
1leek, washed and sliced
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 tsp whole black peppercorns
700 ml vegetable stock (or boiling water and 1 stock cube)
3 tbsps creme fraiche
Pinch of salt
Knob of butter
Olive oil

For the dumplings:
2 slices brown bread*
25g grated parmesan
1/2 the cauliflower leaves, sliced
1 tbsp dried parsley (or small bunch fresh)
1 egg

1. Preheat the oven to 150′. Place the cauliflower florets, garlic and whole black peppercorns on an oven tray and drizzle with olive oil. Roast in the middle of the oven for a total of 45 minutes.

2. I recommend that you prepare everything else after you put the cauliflower in the oven. This shortens the cooking time. So – prepare the other ingredients.

3. In a large saucepan, warm up 2 tbsp olive oil and a knob of butter. When it is warm and clear, add the diced onion. Softly cook for about 5 minutes, then add the leek.

4. When the onion and leek have both softened, add the vegetable stock and half the cauliflower leaves. Stir the pot, and leave to simmer for 10 minutes.

5. Put your slices of bread in the toaster or oven to dry out. Then, place them in your food processor with the other half of the cauliflower leaves, parmesan, parsley, and egg. Whizz it all up!

6. By now the cauliflower should have roasted for about 45 minutes. Check that it is cooked and softened. If not, leave it in the oven for 10 more minutes. If it is, you can now take it out the oven and add the cauliflower and garlic to the soup pot. Stir the soup and put the lid on. Save the peppercorns.

7. Grind the roasted peppercorns with your mortar and pestle and add a pinch to the soup and a pinch to the dumpling mixture.

8. Roll the dumpling mixture into little balls. You should be able to make 10-12. Lightly grease a tray and then cook the dumplings in the oven for 15 minutes.

9. Mash down, or whizz up your soup! Whatever machine you have to smooth it out will be fine! Stir in 3 dollops of creme fraiche and a pinch of salt to taste!

10. Serve hot with a swirl of creme fraiche and 2-3 dumplings per person.

Enjoy! I would love to hear your feedback if you try it!

Tip: If you like it spicy, add a pinch of smoked paprika to the soup. 

You may also like these recipes:

Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry

This is one of my very simple recipes for those of you who enjoy an Indian style vegetarian curry. You can eat this as a veggie main with rice or as a side dish as part of an Indian meal. It also goes nicely with other vegetarian Indian food such as my paneer recipes. 😉

I recently watched the Great British Food Revival on the BBC, which is a programme attempting to remind us Brits about the delicious and fresh local produce growing all around us. Well-known chefs have teamed up to teach us new recipes using the great British produce.

One episode showed the Hairy Bikers cooking with cauliflower, and reminding us that this is a delicious, healthy, and cheap vegetable. Above all it is also an incredibly versatile vegetable. It is delicious when fried, roasted, pureed, and should certainly not be over boiled and served without seasoning! However as the hairy bikers said, the cauliflower has become somewhat unfashionable compared to its posher cousin, the purple sprouting brocolli and other similar vegetables.

I have always liked cauliflower and I think it is a beautiful vegetable. This is a recipe I created to accompany an Indian meal. I have made it a few times now and found that it is always successful and there are never any left-overs!

 

Cauliflower and Chickpea Curry

Start to finish time: 45 minutes
Serves: 4 (as a side)

Ingredients:

Half a cauliflower, washed and cut up small
2 tbsps sunflower/vegetable oil
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1cm thick ginger, chopped small
120g tinned chickpeas, drained
2 tbsp tomato purée
handful fresh coriander, chopped

Spices:
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1tsp cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric

Salt & pepper

1. Heat the oil in a pan. Add the sliced onions and soften on a medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and the ginger and continue to cook in the same way for 10 minutes. Add more oil if it gets too dry.

2. In a separate pan, heat all the spices for a minute. Then, add it to the onions and stir in.

3. You can now add the cauliflower, coriander and 1/4 cup water and put the lid on the pan. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring once or twice.

4. When the cauliflower has softened, add the chickpeas and the tomato puree. If the curry is looking dry, add a bit more water. (You don’t want it to be runny though as it isn’t a sauce.) Taste, and add salt and pepper accordingly.

5. Cook for 10 more minutes and then serve hot.

I ate mine with basmati rice and my homemade tandoori chicken! Delicious!

I hope you enjoy my recipe and as always I’d love to hear from you if any have tried it or any comments/advice/questions!