However, since I know you're probably bored and casting around for something to do at work, I offer this instead:
Chilled Cauliflower and Carrot Soup with Ginger.
Hey, it's off-white and served cold.. just pretend your eating savory and mostly-melted ice cream. It's pretty simple. How simple? I just made some, in about 30 minutes.. so fast I didn't think to take any pictures.
- 2-4 C stock // I know that's a wide range, I get into it below.
- 2 tbl olive oil
- 2 tbl butter
- Some ginger, grated or minced
- 1/2 C sweet onion, diced
- 1 head of cauliflower, cut up into pieces (separate the stalk from the florets)
- 3 large carrots, cut up into pieces
- salt and pepper
If you have any of this in the house:
- 1/2 C white wine
- 1/2 C whole milk
0. The day before you want to make soup, take a quart of stock out of the freezer and let it defrost.
What do you mean you don't have a quart of stock in the freezer? C'mon, haven't I taught you anything.. go get a gallon ziplock bag. Now, whenever you roast a chicken or cut up some vegetables, instead of throwing stuff away, put it in the bag in the freezer. Onion peels, the bits of the carrot you would otherwise throw away, the base of a head of celery.. all of that sort of thing. When you roast a chicken, after you pick it over for meat, stuff the carcass in the bag. Next time you come over, I'll show you how to butterfly a whole (raw) chicken, and you can put the backbone in the bag too. When you have a couple of bags full and some time on a Saturday afternoon, make stock. Then, let it cool and freeze it in quart containers. Easy.
Incidentally, this is why, when you go rooting around in my freezer for ice cream, you never know if those cottage cheese containers have ice cream or stock in them. It's also why I suggest freezing the stock in quart containers. Obviously, any size that works for you is fine.
1. In a large pot, heat the butter and oil
2. Once the butter has melted, add the onion and ginger. Saute until the onion is soft.
3. Add the carrot and the cauliflower stalk, ~1/2 C stock, and some salt and pepper (I never measure that, sorry).
4. Bring the stock to a simmer, cover the pot, and let it cook for 5 minutes.
5. Add the rest of the cauliflower and the rest of the stock. If you're using it, add the wine and/or milk
Note: Because I end up with quart containers of stock, I just added the rest of the quart (and probably used closer to 1C of stock in step #3). But if you want it a little thicker, you could use less here.
6. Bring to a simmer, and cook until the carrots and cauliflower is soft (you should be able to easily spear them with a fork).
7. Puree with a stick blender, and let cool.
It should come out pretty thick. You'll need to play around with the quantity of cauliflower and carrot to liquids, depending on what consistency you like. Since this recipe is so basic, you'll want to use pretty good stock. So if you are too lazy/busy to make your own, don't cheap out with the canned crap.
That reminds me, a quick trick to improve the quality of store-bought stock (I think I got it from Cooks Illustrated) is to simmer the stock with a couple ribs of celery, some carrot, and half an onion for twenty minutes. At the end, toss the vegetables (they'll be soggy and flavorless anyway).
*If you want the original recipe, with real ingredient measurements, here it is, from Chilled Cauliflower and Carrot Soup with Ginger.