Prep ~ 5-8 minutes; Cook ~ 25-30 minutes
Makes 4 cups
For the soup:
1 bulb of fennel
1 2-lb head of cauliflower
1 cup + 2 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon white wine or champagne vinegar
kosher salt and black pepper
For the croutons:
3-4 slices of bread
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
kosher salt and black pepper
- For a dairy-free option, substitute chicken stock or vegetable stock for the whole milk. You could also use water.
Cut the skinny tops off the fennel bulb. You can slice these very thin using a mandoline and serve them in a salad or toss with pasta, or you could pour hot pickling liquid over the top and use them on a sandwich! Roughly chop the bulb into smallish pieces and place in a large pot. The smaller you cut the fennel and cauliflower the faster it will cook.
Cut off the bottom stem and remove any green leaves from the head of cauliflower. Trim the florets and white stems into small pieces to make about 6 cups. Add to the fennel. Pour in 1 cup of whole milk, cover the pot and set over medium heat. Allow the veggies to steam and simmer gently until tender, about 20 minutes. Shake the pan back and forth or stir every so often to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom. It won't seem like enough liquid, but the steaming will generate moisture and by resisting the urge to add more liquid now you will give you control over how thick you want the soup once you start pureeing the veggies.
While the veggies steam, start on the croutons. Cut or tear the bread into bite-sized pieces. Warm 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil over medium-high heat in a large saute pan. A big pan is best so the cubes can all sit on the surface of the pan as they cook rather than being piled on top of one another, so don't crowd the pan. If necessary, cook in two batches. Once the oil is hot, add the cubed bread and season with salt, pepper and smoked paprika (if desired). Toss to coat evenly, then continue to cook until crispy and golden. Toss often to prevent burning and brown evenly. Transfer to a plate and allow to cool in a single layer so they don't get soggy.
Finally, set the pot back over medium heat and stir for a few minutes to warm it back up. Check the final seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste. Ladle soup into bowls, top with homemade croutons and sprinkle with some fresh chopped herbs. I absolutely love the combination of tarragon and cauliflower, but parsley works great as well. Serve warm and enjoy!
Prep ~ 5-8 minutes; Cook ~ 0 minutes
5 ounces mixed baby greens
2 large oranges
1-2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh herb such as parsley, dill or tarragon
Kosher salt and black pepper
- Goat cheese would be a phenomenal addition to this salad. Just sayin'.
- Another great addition would be the homemade croutons that are paired with the soup above.
Place the greens in a large salad bowl. Peel the shallot and slice thin, then add to the greens. Chop any fresh herb you have on hand and toss it into the greens.
Next, supreme the oranges, which simply means to cut off the skin and pith and cut out each individual orange segment. Here's how:
First - cut off the top and bottom of each orange. You should cut deep enough that you actually reveal the flesh of the orange.
Second - Set one orange on a flat edge and use a small knife to cut down the sides of the orange, removing the peel. This is the perfect time to use one of those smaller paring knives you may have in your knife set. Repeat until all the skin is removed.
Finally - Take the knife and cut into the orange on each side of each inner segment. When you cut in on one side and then the other side, the segment will practically pop right out. Continue carving out each segment until all are released. Voila! Supremes!