When I'm in need of inspiration, I frequently walk the farmers markets. It's a very sensual experience. I smell the different herbs, the flowers, and even the kettle corn. I feel the rough edges of a prickly cucumber, the smooth flesh of an heirloom tomato, and the fuzzy skin of a ripe peach. And of course the colors of freshly plucked fruits and veggies are vibrant with life.
Experiencing all that our farmers markets have to offer is usually enough to get my creative juices going.
Sometimes I will spot an ingredient and run through 50 million things I want to make with it, and other times I know right away. At last week's farmers market Patrick was the one who spotted the trio of acid-colored cauliflower. He snapped the above picture on his iphone and sent it to me. I was shocked at the colors! So brilliant! I did a mental check of everything else we had at home and requested he pick one to bring home for soup.
Once home I learned the name of the beautiful orange bouquet was called a cheddar cheese cauliflower. I should have known. It almost looked as if it had been coated in Cheeto cheese powder.
I tasted a bit raw, and sadly it didn't taste like cheddar cheese. Still I thought it would work amazingly in a curried soup.
The resulting soup was intensely creamy, rich and satisfying. The curry works really well with coconut milk and made me think of those thick North Indian sauces I'd come to love. Perfect on a cool evening.
curried roasted cheddar cheese cauliflower soup, gluten free
- 1 head of cheddar cheese cauliflower, roughly chopped
- 1 small bunch of organic carrots, roughly chopped
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 1 1/2 tbsp of curry powder
- 2 14-oz cans chicken stock
- 2 10-oz cans coconut milk
- salt and pepper
Toss cauliflower and carrots in olive oil and maple syrup. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. Using a spatula try to flip the cauliflower and carrots around in the pan so it browns evenly on both sides. Return to the oven for 15 more minutes. Reserving a few cauliflower pieces for garnish, transfer cauliflower, carrots, and drippings to a large stock pot. On medium-low heat, saute the carrots with onion and garlic until the onion is translucent. Add in the curry powder and stir to combine. Pour in chicken stock and coconut milk. Cook for about 30 minutes. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until it is the desired consistency. Taste. Season with additional salt and pepper if desired. Garnish with fresh herbs(optional) and whole roasted cauliflower pieces.
This recipe is part of this month’s Let’s Lunch theme of farmers market inspired dishes. Before you go, check out my fellow lunchers’ posts below. And if you’d like to join us, go to Twitter and post a message with the hashtag #Letslunch, or post a comment below.
- Annabelle‘s Mixed Berry Shortcakes at Glass of Fancy
- Cheryl's Summery Mexican Chicken Stew at a Tiger in the Kitchen
- Grace‘s Yellow Watermelon with Red Chile at HapaMama
- Joe‘s Peach Jam with Lemon Basil at Joe Yonan
- Juliana‘s Les Halles Market Tomato-Peach Salad at J Loh
- Linda‘s Farmers’ Market Fruit Galette at Spicebox Travels
- Linda‘s Zucchini or Cucumber Quick Pickles at Free Range Cookies
- Lisa‘s Eveleigh Farmers’ Market (in Australia!) Winter Salad at Monday Morning Cooking Club
- Lucy‘s Sweet Auburn Curb Market (in Atlanta!) Tomato Gravy at A Cook and Her Books
- Nancie‘s Carrboro, N.C., Farmers’ Market Vegetable Plate “Nicoise” with Spoonbread at Nancie McDermott
- Patricia‘s Kim-Chi-Style Corn at The Asian Grandmother’s Cookbook
- Renee‘s Sweet and Sour Salad at My Kitchen and I