This is a velvety and rich cauliflower soup with a spicy kick of horseradish. Light after the holiday excess and perfectly warming for a cold winters day.
Use fresh grated horseradish if you can get it, or failing that the pickled or creamed jarred horseradish (possibly still knocking around after Christmas dinner!)
Lovely served with thinly sliced, roasted cauliflower for a pleasant textural contrast and a drizzle of white truffle, hazelnut or walnut oil.
Serves – 6
Time – approx 1 hour
Utensils – high sided pot or saucepan with a fitted lid, roasting tin and a blender.
1 large cauliflower
2 sticks of celery
100g fresh grated or 3 tsp of jarred / grated pickled or creamed horseradish
1 litre of good stock or water
400g cooked weight of cannelini beans
2-3 tsp sea salt
1 bay leaf
To serve – black pepper, truffle, hazelnut or walnut oil
Break 3-4 large florets from the cauliflower, slice each floret into 2 or 3 pieces and set aside for roasting.
Chop the rest of the cauliflower roughly. Chop the stem and if you have the leaves, roughly chop those too for adding to the soup.
Slice the leeks, peel and chop the pear, chop the celery, peel the horseradish if using fresh and grate it.
Gently warm the olive oil over a low heat and add the leeks, celery and bay leaf. Leave to soften for 5 minutes or so. Add the cauliflower, mix well and leave to cook together for another 5 minutes.
Add the pear, horseradish and cannelini beans, mix well and add the water or stock. Add 2 tsp salt and some black pepper. Bring to the boil and then turn down the heat to a simmer. Cook for approximately 30 minutes.
Add the slices of cauliflower to a roasting tray, toss in a 2 tbsp olive oil, sprinkle on 1/2 tsp salt and roast on 200 C for 30 minutes until the cauliflower is golden brown.
Remove the bay leaf from the soup and blend the soup until creamy. Check for salt and add a little more if required (a pinch at a time).
Serve with a few slices of the roasted cauliflower, extra black pepper and a drizzle of the oil.