Cauliflower Soup

This soup is good, don’t get me wrong, but the croutons are seriously addicting. They are the perfect complement to this creamy, satisfying cauliflower soup. I just kept piling them on, inducing  David to tease me, “Have some soup with your croutons?”

adapted from: Super Natural Every Day

6 oz chunk artisan whole wheat bread, or pumpernickel torn into little pieces
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ tablespoons Dijon-style mustard
¼ teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, clarified butter, or extra-virgin olive oil
2 shallots, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 large potato, peeled and cut into tiny cubes

2 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 ½ cups vegetable broth
12 oz. cauliflower, cut into small florets
2/3 cup freshly grated aged Cheddar, plus more for topping
2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
extra virgin olive oil, to serve

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the middle of the oven.

Put the torn bread in a large bowl. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Whisk the olive oil, mustard, and salt into the butter and pour the mixture over the bread. Toss well, then turn the bread onto a baking sheet.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the croutons are golden and crunchy. Flip them once or twice along the way.

While the croutons are toasting, start the soup. Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the shallots, onion, and a big pinch of salt. Saute until the onions soften, a couple of minutes. Stir in the potato, cover and cook long enough for the pieces to soften a bit. Uncover, stir in the garlic, then the broth. Bring to a boil, taste to sure the potatoes are tender, and if they are, stir in the cauliflower. Cook, covered, for 3-5 minutes, just until the cauliflower is tender throughout.

Remove the pan from the heat and puree the soup with an immersion blender. Stir in half of the cheddar and the mustard. Add more broth if necessary to thin the soup. Taste and add more salt if needed. Serve sprinkled with the remaining cheese, some croutons, and a drizzle of olive oil.

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