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26 November 2017

Cauliflower and Chestnut Soup


Yesterday I went shopping, bought decorations, a Christmas tree and put it up whilst watching a Christmas movie...and in case you were wondering, no, of course I'm not in the least bit excited about Christmas. So, my home is now lit up with twinkly lights and smells like cinnamon and orange peel...which is just about perfect. This next recipe is the perfect dish to start of your Christmas meal with...with packed with holiday spirit through the deliciousness of chestnuts. 


This cauliflower and chestnut soup is packed with smoky, caramelised flavours that just scream winter and will warm you right through, I topped it with a swirl of herb oil and crunchy, smoky  garlic sourdough croutons. Soup doesn't get much better than this and it may be the best soup I've ever eaten.



I caramelised the onions for 10 minutes before adding the rest of the soup ingredients - it's important not to skip this step, as a huge amount of flavour is created here. I also used fresh smoked garlic and smoked garlic powder, for that rich, but still subtle, bonfire kind of flavour that reminds you of winter. Every flavour in this soup just complements another, so no ingredient overpowers another, but just works so beautifully, to create a soup with layers of delicate flavours.













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Cauliflower and Chestnut Soup | Serves: 4 | Time: 30 mins  

You'll need

  • Chopping board
  • Knife
  • Large saucepan
  • Measuring spoons
  • Blender/pestle and mortar
  • Hand blender/blender that can blend hot liquids
  • Baking tray

Ingredients

Soup
  • Olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove smoked garlic
  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 1 tsp smoked garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp mustard
  • 1.5 tbsp vegan bouillon
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 180g vacuum packed cooked chestnuts
  • 0.75-1L boiling water
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • salt
  • pepper
Herb oil
  • Olive oil
  • 15 chives
  • Handful fresh parsley
  • Salt
  • Pepper
Smoked garlic croutons
  • 2 slices sourdough
  • 1 tsp smoked garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • Generous pinch salt
  • Olive oil 

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Dice an onion and add to the pan with a splash of oil, fry for 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes, they should be golden and caramelised it's important not to skip this step.
  3. Then, crush in the garlic, chop the cauliflower and add the cauliflower, mustard, smoked garlic powder, bouillon and a pinch of nutmeg, mix together, add the chestnuts, cover with boiling water and a tsp of apple cider vinegar. Put the lid on and simmer for 10 mins.
  4. Chop the bread into 2cm cubes, cover with smoked garlic powder, parsley, salt and plenty of olive oil. Mix together so the cubes are coated evenly and bake for 10-15 minutes, until golden and crispy.
  5. Meanwhile, add the herbs to the blender with a glug of oil and a pinch of salt and pepper and blend. Alternatively, crush the herbs in a pestle and mortar and mix in the oil.
  6. Let the soup cool slightly and blend with a hand blender or a heat-proof jug blender. Taste for seasoning, add salt and pepper, serve up and enjoy! 
Cassidy  xx