Sunday, April 17, 2011

Curried Cauliflower, Kale, Carrot, Onion, Garlic Soup - in photos

I mostly just make up recipes as I go along. Like anything else in the whole world, cooking stuff you want to actually eat takes practice.

Some people need recipes, some people (me!) just wing it, and all 100% of us will make something so revolting that it can't even be saved with ketchup and rice, or ice cream and maple syrup. But about 96% of what we make will be edible, I promise you that.

Which brings me to the soup I made today. I have a friend who is about to go through 35 days of radiation and I promised that I would make them some food. The only requirement is that it is vegetarian. My only requirement is that it does taste like crap, because radiation is going to be bad enough as it is without having to choke down crap.

Also, soup is always easy to make and eat and this turned out to be delicious AND easy. 


Without further ado and adon't, here you are, the recipe in pictures! Oh wait, one small ado: it will make everything so much less stressful if you take the time to get everything ready before starting to cook. And when I say chopped I mean to a size that will fit on a soup spoon. Use your noggin on that one.

Take one of these (or your version of it):




Put a little olive oil in it and heat over medium heat.



Then add 3 of these, chopped:


And a few cloves of these, minced:

Saute the whole magilla over a medium heat until the onion is translucent. About 10 minutes or so, just look at it.

Peel and dice a few of these, about five thin ones or three fat ones, and add to the pot:


At this point the onions might need a little water. It's fine to add some vegetable broth or water to keep the onions from scorching. Which you will really only need to do if you didn't heed my advice above to get everything ready beforehand. So if you are chopping carrots while the onions cook, yeah, you will need a little water.

Ok next add in some spices. I added curry, turmeric (to make it really vivid yellow), cumin, ground black pepper, a few flakes of red pepper, and a little salt. This is just a guide, you can use what you want or have on hand. You could add herbes de Provence, and a little splash of dry white vermouth if you don't like curry. Don't go crazy here, if you add rosemary, mint, and lime, it will taste like sh*t.

So now you are spiced up and at this point add a quart of this:



I will say/brag that I usually have homemade vegetable broth on hand, but I ran out and never bothered to replenish my stash. Eh, sh*t happens. You could also just use water if you want, but you'd probably want to bump up the seasoning.

Next add in a stemmed and floretted head of these:


And a couple of chopped leaves of this:


In case you aren't familiar with those green leaves, that's kale. Kale is wonderful stuff, very tasty in soup and when it cooks it turns a gorgeous green color. I cut out the rib, stack and roll the leaves, then slice them into long strips. If you're fancy, you call this "chiffonade".

Lastly add in a rinsed can of these:


Simmer this concoction over medium heat until the cauliflower is just tender. Hmmm, I think in my case it might have been half an hour.

If you make with curry and turmeric and cumin it will be a lovely vivid yellow, as well as a little spicy.  Also, this will make quite a bit of soup. You might want to add a little more liquid the longer you keep it.

Not only that, but some garlicky croutons, or even some naan would make this soup perfect.

Enjoy!