Roasted Cauliflower Soup with Chimichurri and Poblano Pisto

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Serves 6 (I doubled it)

1 head of cauliflower, sliced thinly, including core
3 tablespoons margarine or canola oil
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ onion, diced
1 leek, white and green parts, sliced thin
1 clove garlic
2 ribs celery, sliced thin
1 teaspoon salt (I used a bit more of kosher salt)
1 cup chicken broth or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon parmesan cheese (I omitted)
2 tablespoons cream (I used soymilk)

1 serrano or jalapeno, depending on how hot you like it
2 cloves garlic
2 cups cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons mint leaves (I used a bit more)
5 tablespoons olive oil
½ tablespoon fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon kosher salt

Poblano pisto:
1 poblano pepper, roasted and peeled and seeded
(I could not get any so I used 1 red pepper and 2 jalapenos and it was awesome with just the right amount of heat)
2 cloves garlic
Pinch kosher salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons cream, non-dairy creamer or soymilk
2 tablespoons tofutti sour cream or crème fraiche
Generous dash of sugar if you need to tame the heat

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place cauliflower in a single layer and roast until soft, about 20 minutes (I sprayed the cauliflower with a bit of olive oil non-stick cooking spray before cooking)

In a large soup pot, heat the margarine/oil over medium heat until melted. Add onion, leek, garlic and celery and cook until soft about 5 – 7 minutes. Add salt to season. Add cauliflower and toss to coat. Cook another 2 minutes.

Add broth and 2-1/2 cups water (a bit more if you need to cover cauliflower), and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes, or until cauliflower is tender.

Add all chimichurri ingredients to the cauliflower mixture and with an immersion blender, puree the soup together.

In as separate bowl, puree the poblano pisto ingredients with an immersion blender or in a regular blender.

Rewarm the soup and serve it hot, with a swirl of the pisto on top. More for spice lovers and less for those with a softer palate.

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