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Feb 16, 2013 05:16 AM

Cream of Cauliflower Soup

Last night I promised to post this recipe in response to a poster who was looking to start a small business. That thread seems to have disappeared, but here is the recipe in the hope that poster will discover it.

Creme DuBarry (Cream of cauliflower soup)

1 large or 2 small cauliflowers, about 3 pounds untrimmed
3 cups fresh or canned chicken broth
1/2 cup raw rice
salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cups milk
1/4 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg, or to taste
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste
1/2 cup heavy cream

1. Trim the cauliflower of leaves and carve out and discard the center core. Cut or break the cauliflower into large flowerets. Place them in a pot and add cold water to cover. Do NOT add salt. Cover with lid and bring to boil. Simmer for about 2 minutes, no longer. Drain immediately. Set aside about 3 pieces for garnish when the soup is cooked. Break them into smaller pieces. Place the remaining cauliflower in a saucepan and add the chicken stock. Add the rice, salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 30 minutes.

2. Pour the cauliflower with broth into the container of a blender or food processor. This will probably have to be done in two or three steps. Blend until smooth and return to saucepan. Add the milk, s&p, nutmeg, and cayenne. Bring to boil and add the cream.

3. Spoon into cup or bowl and add a few pieces of garnish.

YIELD: 6 to 8 servings

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    1. Hi Grampart: I don't know what happened to my post either! I'm going to contact Chow and find out.

      In the interim, thanx for the recipe. I'm going to copy it and paste it to my recipes folder, just in case this disappears too.


      1. Looks both simple & delicious. Just my cup of tea. . . . or soup. Thanks for sharing!

        1. I do not know the context of the original thread. I just want to comment that the core, stem, and leaves can be usable parts, and can add extra flavor if that is desired. I learned this from someone else. In this particular recipe, for instance, the core can be added to the stock in the simmer of step 1. It is easily identifiable afterward, and is easy to remove before moving to step 2.

          I've seen the stem mandolined and used for garnish.

          One can also steep the leaves in the milk used in step 2 while the florets are simmering in step 1. Of course, strain the milk before using it.

          Or these parts can be used to create the chicken stock being used in the soup.

          I was personally shocked how much flavor and aroma is contained in the parts normally tossed away!

          8 Replies
          1. re: ttochow

            This is a recipe from The New York Times Cook Book by Craig Claiborne & Pierre Franey 1980 edition. Promised and delivered.

            1. re: grampart

              Bless you Grampart. I'm making your (NY Times) recipe as we speak.

              Thanx again,

              1. re: caiatransplant

                I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

                1. re: grampart

                  Hi Grampart. I successfuly completed the Creme Dubarry but (sorry) found it bland. I added the juice and zest of one lemon, a big pinch of thyme and doubled the freshly grated nutmeg. It is sooooooo good!!!! Give it a shot and see what you think and let me know.

                  I added the lemon because when I drained the cauliflower in a colander in my sink, it was centered over the drain and I had a lemon down there but hadn't "disposed" of it yet. The simmering water hit the lemon and the smell came up with the smell of the cauliflower and it was wonderful.



                  1. re: caiatransplant

                    I should have mentioned that I use at least twice the nutmeg and the lemon and thyme sounds like a great idea. Also, in my bowl anyway, I put in a nice pat of butter. Perhaps, when you think you have it perfected, you'll post your recipe. Thanks for letting me know.

                    1. re: grampart

                      Hi Grampart.

                      Okay, I finished the Creme Dubarry with additions as mentioned earlier. The pat of butter per bowl sounds good, but I'm inclined (God help me) to add a blob (2 Tbsps.) of butter to the reheated soup, mix well and serve. A tip from a chef I met once - "all soups are better with a blob of butter added at the end, just before serving."

                      I bagged (2 cups each) and froze 4 bags of your wonderful soup, plus 1+ cup left over (in my fridge). I'm at war with myself - I already had dinner mapped out but wanted to EAT THE SOUP. Bad me. Tomorrow I'm making carrot/apple/curry soup. Hmmm


                      1. re: caiatransplant

                        Grampart: I gave into the 1+ cup of soup referred to above. In reheating and eating it (with a blob of butter) I found that although the lemon is subtle, next time I make it, I will use the zest of the whole lemon but will only use the juice from 1/2 the lemon. Juice from the whole lemon overpowers the taste of the cauliflower. Other than that: Huzzahh!!

                        What other recipes do you have???

                        1. re: caiatransplant

                          I've made this one a few times. A great warmer-upper that is a bit more filling and definitely not bland.

          2. I made Jacques Pepin's Creamy Curry Cauliflower Soup. It was simple and sublime. I served it for guests and they all loved it. I even skipped adding cream (as Pepin suggests you can do) as my Vitamix made it so creamy.
            The soup adds butter in the blending process. Previously, If I were to use butter in a soup, I would add it in the beginning when sauteing the vegetables. Adding at the end made for a richer mouth feel and that little tweak is one I'll keep in my play book.