Takes 10 mins to make, 35 mins to cook
Cauliflower Soup with Gorgonzola
- 1 medium cauliflower
- small knob unsalted butter
- 2 smallish yellow onions, peeled and finely sliced
- 4 thyme sprigs
- 2 bay leaves
- 1l/1 ¾ pt vegetable stock
- 250g/9oz Gorgonzola or vegetarian alternative
- 100ml tub crème fraiche
- pickled pear relish and finely chopped curly parsley
Remove the outer leaves form the cauliflower and break it into small florets (don’t bother to remove the stalk – it adds to the flavour). Melt the butter gently in a saucepan (large enough to hold all your ingredients) over a medium heat. Add the onions and sweat gently for 5 mins or so until translucent. Add the cauliflower, thyme and bay leaves. Season with a little salt and pepper, to allow the flavours to adjust and find their feet. Pour in the vegetable stock, stir and bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer for 20 mins or so, until the cauliflower is very soft.
Crumble in the Gorgonzola and stir over a low heat until it has melted into the soup. Add the crème fraiche and stir to combine. Pick out the bay leaves and thyme stalks, then tip soup into a blender and whiz until really smooth. This will take a good minute or so, as often one or two little florets escape the blade.
Return the soup to the pan and reheat gently. Taste and add a little more salt and pepper if you think it needs it. Ladle into warm soup plates and spoon a little pear relish into the centre. Grind a little pepper over the soup, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve.
Pickled Pear Relish
Makes 1 jar
Takes 15 mins to make, 15 mins to cook
- 2 tbsp dried cranberries
- 1 tbsp currants
- 2 firm, ripe Conference pears
- 1 Golden Delicious apple
- Unsalted butter, for frying
- 75ml/3 floz cider or red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp caster sugar
- 3 thyme sprigs (ideally lemon thyme)
- 1 cinnamon stick
Soak the dried cranberries and currants in a little bowl of warm water for 10 mins or so to soften them slightly. Core and chop the pears and apple into small dice. (I like to leave the skin on).
Melt the butter in a small pan over a low heat. When it begins to foam, add the diced fruit and cook for 5 mins until starting to soften. Add all the other ingredients and cook for a further 8-10 mins. Taste and season, if necessary. Remove the cinnamon and thyme. The relish will have shiny jewel-like lustre.
Anne says; You can keep the relish in a covered bowl in the fridge for a week or so, or in a sterilised jar in the fridge for up to a month.