I can only eat so many salads.
Even I have my limits. Maybe it’s the long Chicago winter, or watching too much Top Chef. But some days a salad just feels like a first course. Like a prelude to something more stick-to-your-ribs.
Sometimes you just want something creamy and thick and rich. Something you can dip a gooey grilled cheese sandwich into. Alas, if only my precious kale salads could somehow morph into …
Well … This.
I was talking to Emily today and she was lamenting the lack of produce in her diet the past few weeks. So I thought it was perfect timing to pull this recipe together for her.
Full disclosure. This is not a start to finish 30 minute meal like a lot of my other recipes. This is a special lazy day at home meal, where you can pad around the kitchen in your slippers and robe (and probably trip on a few toys) throughout the process. Roast the cauliflower, reheat your coffee, get distracted doing something else, then come back and fill the dutch oven … set the timer, do something else for awhile, then come back. You know what kind of recipe I’m talking about. It’s not hard, it doesn’t take a lot of time to prep, but it has several steps. In my world, it’s a weekend recipe.
Anyway, I made this soup last weekend when my sister was coming to visit, and so I wanted something that was a fitting reward her for making the four hour drive with an infant.
I put my husband, the resident grilled cheese maker, to work on the griddle while I pureed up a batch of this soup in my kitchen pride and joy (aka my Vitamix).
- 1 large head of cauliflower, cut into florets
- 5 TB coconut oil
- 2 tsp salt, plus additional to taste
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/8 tsp cayenne
- 1 large bunch kale, stems removed, cut into 1″ pieces
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 5 cups chicken or vegetable broth (I used homemade, very low sodium)
- Toss cauliflower with 2 tbs melted coconut oil, season lightly with salt and pepper
- Roast cauliflower on a cookie sheet for ~20 minutes at 450 degrees F
- Optional: At this point, take a few handfuls of kale to make kale chip topping
- In a stockpot or dutch oven over medium heat, warm 2 TB oil. Cook onion and celery until soft.
- Add garlic, cook one minute
- Add salt**, pepper, cayenne, cauliflower and broth
- Bring to a simmer, cover, reduce to medium low and simmer for 10 minutes
- Stir in the remaining (1/2-3/4 bunch) kale, cover, cook an additional 10 minutes
- Transfer to blender and puree in batches, or use an immersion blender
For uber-gourmet presentation, top with the roasted kale chips and some pine nuts.
P.S. This may be one of the only times you’ll hear me utter the word kale chips. Because they neither do kale nor chips any justice, if you ask me.
Voila! Proof veggies and comfort food are not mutually exclusive.
Now go forth and eat kale,
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