Cheesy Cauliflower Soup

I promised I would do something with all the strawberries we bought, but instead I’m writing about soup. It’s a GOOD soup though, one of the best I’ve ever had! I think the mustard and croutons really make it… but more on that in a second.

Somehow this week flew by without me once removing my camera from the bag I keep it in. Between getting things wrapped up at school (grades are now turned in! 5 more days of work) and going to the gym every day (our new gym is a billion times more appealing than our old gym), I just didn’t get around to making anything blog-worthy. I actually made this soup a few weeks ago, but debated sharing it because it was almost June and it really didn’t seem like a seasonally-appropriate choice.

I know a lot of the country is hot and humid right now, but the Bay Area is much colder and wetter than normal, so it’s definitely still soup weather. I know things aren’t too different in the Pacific Northwest, because in the last week or two, I’ve noticed a LOT of facebook status updates about how ridiculously late Spring is to arrive, and “this is the LAST year I’m putting up with Portland weather…who wants to move to Arizona/Hawaii/Florida with me!?”

So here we are, on June 4, with soup. It is one of those rich, creamy soups that seems like it should be full of heavy cream, but is actually full of cauliflower, potato, and cheese. There’s a little mustard, both in the soup and on the croutons, which really enhances the flavor. The croutons are a MUST – a perfect, crunchy contrast to the creaminess of the soup.

(from Super Natural Every Day) <-- If you haven't bought it yet, you're missing out!

A decent sized chunk of whole grain bread (6 oz), cut or torn into 1/2″ pieces
2 tbsp butter, melted
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard
a few pinches of sea salt

2 tbsp butter
2 shallots, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
one large potato, peeled and diced (1/4″ cubes)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 head cauliflower, chopped
2/3 cup sharp cheddar cheese
2 tsp Dijon mustard

To make the croutons, toss all ingredients together in a large bowl, then spread on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes, or until the croutons are crunchy

To make the soup, melt the butter in a large soup pot. Add the shallots and onions and cook for a few minutes, stirring, until they soften. Sprinkle with a little salt, then add the potato, garlic, and vegetable broth.

Cover and bring to a low boil, cooking for about 8 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Add the cauliflower and stir well. Cover and cook another 5 or 6 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender. Add the cheese and mustard and stir well.

Puree with an immersion blender, and add salt to taste. Add a little more broth or water if the soup is too thick.

Serve topped with croutons and a sprinkling of grated cheese.

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