Cauliflower Soup

Makes 1 litre 

2                              Small cauliflowers

100          g             Finely chopped onion

2                             Cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed

50            g             Diced unsalted butter

2              lt              Water

100          ml            Cream

Salt

Freshly ground white pepper

To make the cauliflower stock, peel and remove all the outer leaves, stalks and fibers from the cauliflowers.

In a heavy based saucepan melt half of the butter and add half of the onion and garlic and sweat for five minutes over a medium heat without colouring until the onion is soft and translucent. Add half of the cauliflower, 2 sprigs of thyme and a good pinch of salt and cook for a further five minutes without colouring. Add 2 litres of cold water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer the stock for 20 minutes, skimming it frequently.  Pass the cauliflower through a fine chinois pressing down on the cauliflower to extract as much flavour and colour as possible.

In a heavy based saucepan melt the remaining butter and add the remaining onion, garlic and thyme. Sweat for five minutes over a medium heat without colouring until the onion is soft and translucent. Add the remaining cauliflower and a good pinch of salt and cook for a further five minutes without colouring. Add the reserved cauliflower stock and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes skimming regularly until the cauliflower is tender. Add the cream and continue to simmer for a further 5 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat and ladle into a liquidizer in batches and blend to a smooth puree. Pass the soup through a fine sieve pressing hard with the back of a ladle to extract as much flavour from the cauliflower as possible. Adjust the seasoning if necessary.

The soup can be served either hot or cold and garnished simply with croutons or parmesan wafers.

The cauliflower soup will keep for up to 3 days in a sealed container in the refrigerator. Because of the high fat content from the cream it does not freeze well.