She worked quietly as the aroma wafted across the house, drawing mouths to feed from near and far. The table was set. The food was cooked. The day was complete.
Sundays are the best days. For those lucky enough to be home, with no work to be tended to and little responsibility requiring your attention (unless of course, you have kids who never rest) then I think they would agree Sundays are our day of reprieve, a day for indulgence; a day for memories to be made around the table. But sometimes, I have this funny little yearning for a midweek tease. Time waits for no man as they say, and its almost become a luxury, something you have to create...dig or carve out of the crevice of life.
I found myself with just enough time this past Wednesday to have an impromptu gathering. Garlic and onions are currently abound here on the farm, and I had a head of cauliflower from the market whose own time was slowly coming to an end. As I took a look around, the sun casting a raspberry hue across the sky as it descended to the horizon, my farm mates wiping the day's grime off their hands looking weary as can be as they crawled inside, I thought to myself 'what a perfect time to make a lovely dinner for us all to gather round'. It pleasantly took a while to make, and everyone scavenged around hanging by the thread of the roasted garlicky smell slowly creeping upstairs. Patience is a virtue of which runs low when this earthy, homey smell captures you and wont let go until you're finally savoring it piece by piece, switching from one sensory experience to the other.
This soup is good. Its pretty damn good. I would tell you otherwise if the opposite were true, but its definitely not. And I have without a doubt had some kitchen fails this week which I had no time to post. Alas, you have to make time right? So enjoy this recipe. Suppers on Sundays can't be beat. But sometimes, just sometimes...when you have a moment or two to spare, a supper on any other day never hurts either.
- 3 heads garlic
- 3 white onions, peeled and thinly sliced
- 3 heads cauliflower, chopped
- 8 sprigs thyme, tied with twine
- 6 cups vegetable stock, plus more to thin, if desired
- 2 cups almond milk, plus more to thin, if desired
- 2 1/2 finely grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 325F. Cut off tops of garlic heads. Place each on a piece of parchment-lined aluminum foil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap tightly in foil, and bake until garlic is very soft, about 1 hour. Let cool. Squeeze garlic from peel; set aside. Increase oven to 350 degrees.
- Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a large pot over medium-low heat. Add onions; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until soft but not browned. Stir in sliced cauliflower and thyme bundle. Simmer until wine is reduced by half. Add stock; bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes.
- Remove thyme and stir in milk and 2 1/2 cups parmesan. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in garlic. Puree in batches until smooth. Thin with more stock or cream, if desired. Return to pot; keep warm on low heat.
- To serve: Ladle soup into bowls, and garnish with roasted cauliflower florets if you like. I personally can't control myself around roasted garlic, eating them all upon sight, so I just topped with pieces of thyme.
I would highly recommend having some sort of deliciously dippable bread to accompany this soup. I was having an ego moment, thinking I don't need to make my lazy butt toast up some crostinis while setting the table. But it was a unanimous vote that a big bread basket to mop up the creamy bits at the bottom of bowls would have been a perfect ending.
To make this soup uber smooth, add about 1/4 more milk and stock, otherwise, you can go chunky if you prefer.