Southfacin’ Cook, Patsy Brumfield

Sometimes, things go right when I’m messing around in the kitchen. This cauliflower soup is one of those times – so great anytime, but especially for a cool winter day. And it’s so easy!
Hope you’ll try it.


Blender or immersion blender, baking sheet, aluminum foil or parchment paper, dutch oven, chef’s knife, cutting board, wooden spoon, measuring equipment, spatula

1 head cauliflower
2 large yellow onions
1 lemon
1 ½ Tablespoons garlic, chopped
1 Tablespoon olive oil
8 oz. button mushrooms, sliced
1 teaspoon unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream
½ cup whole milk
pinch red pepper flakes
salt, pepper to taste
1 heaping teaspoon mild curry powder

Preheat oven to 425. Remove cauliflower leaves. Wash and break or cut apart cauliflower into somewhat equal-size florets. Place them on your lined baking sheet. Roast about 20 minutes, turn and cook another 5-7 minutes until soft. Remove from oven and set aside.
In dutch oven on medium high, heat olive oil until you see it shimmering and add thinly sliced onions, two pinches of salt. Lower heat to medium. Stir often until caramelized, which means they turn a nice toasty brown. This will take a while, like 20 minutes. They can be lightly brown, if you lose your nerve (I do sometimes), just make sure they cook to that stage because they will become so sweet by cooking this way.

When onions are caramelized, lower heat slightly, add garlic, pepper, red pepper flakes, curry powder and mushrooms. Cook 5-7 minutes until mushrooms are soft. Add juice from lemon. Lower heat slightly again. Add roasted cauliflower. Stir in butter, cream and milk. Cook another 5 minutes, remove from heat and allow to cool about 10 minutes.
If using immersion blender, insert it into the cooler mixture and begin blending until slightly chunky or creamy, depending on your preference and how long you can stand there stirring the blender around.
If using a regular blender, carefully pour soup mixture about half-way, remove clear cap from blender lid, place your hand or a cloth lightly over the opening. (If the mixture is too/fairly warm and you don’t remove the clear cap from the lid, the mixture may “blow up” and go all over the place.) Here too, blend until slightly chunky or take it all the way to creamy puree. Likely, you’ll need to blend in batches because you’ll have more soup mixture than the blender will safely hold. (If you’re using the blender, pour blended batches into a large mixing bowl until you’ve blended it all.)

Return blended soup mixture to the dutch oven. Taste and season with salt/pepper as needed. Return to low heat just hot enough to serve.
Remember: You’re cooking with cream and you don’t want it to boil, just close to a boil.

SERVE: Makes 4-6 bowls. You may want to top it with a dollop of tangy plain Greek yogurt, shredded sharp cheddar or raw, chopped green onions. Serve with your favorite side salad and a crusty loaf of french bread or cornbread (muffins?). It’s a wonderful new way to get veggies on the table and satisfy your soup cravings.

Photos: Patsy Brumfield