Roasted Cauliflower, Broccoli & Leek Soup

Roasted Broccoli, Cauliflower & Leek Soup

I got the idea for this soup from Frugal Feeding. Cauliflower, broccoli and leeks are all among my favorite vegetables. I used to be fairly neutral towards cauliflower until I started roasting it. I am fairly certain roasting makes just about anything better. If the soup is looking a little more white than green, that might be due to the fact that some a lot of the broccoli disappeared somewhere after roasting and before entering the soup pot.  Roasted broccoli is probably in my top 3 favorite vegetables. It would have been rude not to sample some, and like I said, roasting makes everything better.

I was tempted to try to make this with a melted cheese crouton on top, but since gluten-free bread is so incredibly temperamental, a piece of toast with some Boursin seemed like a much safer bet. Apart from the cheese on the bread, the soup is entirely vegan.  I ended up having a lot of soup left over, so I ended up freezing the rest. I’ll report back on how it serves up after defrosting when I get around to eating it.

 

Roasted Cauliflower, Broccoli & Leek Soup

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 5+ garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 head (about 2 pounds) cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 large (about 1 pound) bunch broccoli, cut into florets
  • 3 large leeks, cleaned and light green/white part cut in half vertically
  • 1 1/2 liters (6 cups) low-sodium vegetable broth
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 400F/200C. In a large heavy pot heat 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Add onion when oil is hot. Cook onion until soft and starting to brown. Reduce heat and add in garlic. Allow onion and garlic to continue to brown and caramelize over low heat, stirring occasionally (about every 10 minutes) while you prepare the rest of the soup.
  2. In a large bowl or plastic bag toss cauliflower, broccoli and leeks with remaining olive oil. Place on large rimmed baking sheets (I had to use two) and place in oven for 25 minutes. Turn the vegetables after 15 minutes.
  3. When vegetables are done roasting, transfer to the large pot with the onion. Increase heat to medium-high and add in 1 liter/4 cups of vegetable broth with salt and pepper to taste. Allow soup to come to a low boil and remove from heat. With either a blender or a hand blender, blend the soup until you reach the desired consistency. If the soup is too thick, add in more broth 1 cup at a time.

Carrot & Leek Soup

Carrot & Leek Soup

I don’t want to jinx it, but it might actually be Fall here. The entire weekend was below 70/21 degrees, it rained for approximately 7 minutes and, despite the fact that I got stuck out in the rain at Farmers’ Market, it was glorious. I have been waiting for this for at least the last 5 months. Since it is finally fall, I can finally enjoy seasonal meals. Soup is much more enjoyable when you can eat it on a cold, gray day.

I liked this soup because it was so simple to make. Once all the chopping was done the soup basically made itself. If I was to make this soup again, I would definitely amp up the number of leeks. Two pounds of carrots is a lot and they almost completely overpowered the leeks. I used a lot more onion and garlic than the original recipe called for as well, which was a good call. If I hadn’t I think the soup would have been very bland.

Carrot & Leek Soup
Adapted from Fine Cooking

  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 large leeks (light-green and white parts only), sliced
  • 6 large cloves garlic, minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 pounds carrots, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt
  1. In a 4- to 5-quart saucepan, melt 3 Tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add the onion, leeks, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; cook until softened and light golden-brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the broth, carrots, bay leaves, thyme sprigs, and 1/2 cup water; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the carrots are tender, about 15 minutes.
  3. When the vegetables are tender, discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. With a regular or a hand blender, purée the soup (work in batches if using a regular blender). Stir in the yogurt. If you prefer a thinner texture, add a little water. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

Mushroom & Leek Risotto

It finally started to feel more autumnal around here this past week. I took advantage of the colder weather to make some food that is a little more decadent and a little more comforting. I’m not really a big fan of pasta or rice, but for some reason a bowl of creamy risotto sounded like the perfect answer. I was almost ready to call it quits a dig in after sautéing the leeks, mushrooms and garlic. The smell was amazing.

This is only the second time I’ve made risotto. It can be kind of time consuming and might seem a little daunting at first, but really it’s more the time factor than the difficulty factor that you should be concerned about. All it requires is a little bit of patience but trust me if I can muster the patience to make it, you most definitely can.

Mushroom & Leek Risotto (adapted from Ezra Pound Cake)

  • 5 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6-8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 medium leeks, washed, trimmed and chopped
  • 1-8oz container of mushrooms, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 3/4 cups/12 ounces arborio rice
  • 2/3 cup/2 ounces parmesan, freshly grated
  • flat leaf parsley, chopped
  1. Pour the vegetable stock into a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring it to a simmer.
  2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, and cook for 1 minute. Add leeks, mushrooms, salt and pepper; cook for about 10 minutes, or until softened and browned. Transfer the vegetables to a plate or bowl.
  3. Return the saucepan to medium heat, and add 2 tablespoons/1 ounce of butter. As soon as it melts, add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, until soft and golden.
  4. Stir in the rice, and cook for about 1 minute, until the grains begin to look translucent and are covered in butter. Add a ladleful of stock to the pan, and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has been absorbed.
  5. Continue to add stock, a ladleful at a time, until all the stock has been absorbed. This should take about 25-30 minutes. The risotto will turn thick and creamy, and the rice should be tender but not sticky.
  6. Just before serving, stir in the leeks, mushrooms, and remaining butter. Add half the grated Parmesan and herbs. Adjust the seasoning and serve, sprinkled with the remaining Parmesan and herbs. Garnish with parsley.