Thursday, January 24, 2013

L is for: Lacinto Kale, Leek, Roasted Cauliflower & White Bean Soup

This soup is many things. It's healthy, it's hearty, it's comforting.

It's also the love child of several nearly-past-their-prime veggies that were sitting in my fridge.

This happens sometimes when I get a gigantic CSA box delivered and then don't find time to cook for a few days. I was determined to use up as many of them as possible before they went bad so I decided a hearty winter soup would fit the bill.

I'll be honest...I didn't originally plan to post this on the blog so I took only a few photos during the process. But seriously...this soup turned out so delicious that I just had to share it with the world.

It's that good.





I decided to do a base of roasted cauliflower. I suppose you could totally skip this step and just cook the cauliflower in the broth with the rest of the vegetables. But I love, love, love the way cauliflower tastes after it's been roasted, so I think this extra step really deepens the flavor. All you have to do is toss cauliflower with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on a shallow pan lined with foil. Roast for about 25 minutes, turning once, until tender and slightly browned. I also had a small bunch of turnips in the fridge that were starting to get a little soft, so I threw those in as well.


While cauliflower is roasting, I heated a little olive oil in a large dutch oven and browned the sausage. In retrospect, I would've sauteed the carrots as well just to get them a little more cooked (instead of adding at the end)...so I'll write it that way in the recipe. Remove to a plate and set aside.

In same dutch oven, add a little more olive oil (if needed) and saute leeks, green onions, celery and garlic until soft and translucent. Add roasted cauliflower, turnips and broth (enough to cover vegetables). Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until vegetables are soft.

Add Parmesan cheese. Then, using an immersion blender (or a regular blender working in batches), puree the mixture until smooth, adding more broth if necessary. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in kale, beans, and reserved sausage and carrots. Cover and cook about 10 minutes longer, or until kale is cooked to your liking. (I prefer mine to retain a little "bite" to it).


Ladle into bowls and serve hot. It's not the sexiest looking of soups...but it sure is tasty. And it just goes to show that sad looking vegetables can make something beautiful.

Winter Soup with Roasted Cauliflower, Kale, White Bean & Sausage

by Jaymee Sire
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes
Keywords: saute roast soup/stew entree gluten-free low-carb low-fat kale leeks turnip white bean winter

Ingredients (4 large bowls)
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 bunch turnips, cut into chunks (optional)
  • olive oil
  • 2 links chicken sausage, cut into bite-sized pieces (omit for vegetarian version)
  • 1 small bunch carrots, sliced
  • 2 large leeks
  • 5 green onions, chopped (white/pale green parts)
  • 1 bunch celery, chopped
  • 4-5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 4-6 cups broth
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 bunch kale, roughly chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 can white beans, drained
  • salt & pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, toss cauliflower and turnips with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on a shallow pan lined with foil. Roast for about 25 minutes, turning once, until tender and slightly browned.
  2. While cauliflower is roasting, heat a little olive oil in a large dutch oven. Brown sausage and saute carrots. Remove both to a plate and set aside.
  3. In same dutch oven, add a little more olive oil (if needed) and saute leeks, green onions, celery and garlic until soft and translucent. Add roasted cauliflower, turnips and broth (enough to cover vegetables). Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and simmer until vegetables are soft.
  4. Add Parmesan cheese. Then, using an immersion blender (or a regular blender working in batches), puree the mixture until smooth, adding more broth if necessary. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. Stir in kale, beans, and reserved sausage and carrots. Cover and cook about 10 minutes longer, or until kale is cooked to your liking. Ladle into bowls and serve hot.
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