Friday, 22 October 2010

Curried cauliflower soup

Some men bring home bunches of flowers, a box of chocolates or maybe even a surprise puppy -not my husband. A little while ago, D had brought home a cauliflower. I raise my eyebrows whenever he picks up excess veg. I often have the working weeks menu worked out in my head, and then he goes and adds another vegetable to the list with no idea what to do with it. It is then, of course left to madam here to be creative with them.

Well this medium sized creamy cauliflower was starting to blacken a little in places, and I know that is enough for some people to throw it away, or put it into the compost bin. Not me, just a little scraping to the coal dust bits and its all worth eating. But that wasn’t the only problem, it was going a little soft too, not as fresh or crunchy as it should be. So I decided throw it all into a big pot and make soup.
One of my favourite soup recipes ever is Jane Grigson's 'Curried Parsnip soup'. Last year I created a version of my own using Swede - a rather large turnip. This time though it was the turn of the cauliflower.
Curried cauliflower and chickpea soup
Serves 4 – 6
1 medium onion, finely sliced
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon grated ginger
2 – 3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon curry powder or garam masala
Salt to taste
½ teaspoon of chilli (optional)
3 cups water
1 x 400g can of chopped tomatoes
1 medium head of cauliflower, florets only
1 x 400g can of cooked chickpeas, drained
In a wide pan, cook the onions and garlic in the oil until the begin to soften. Add the ginger, curry powder or garam masala, chilli if using and salt and sauté for a minute or so, stirring constantly so the spices don’t burn. Add the tomatoes and cook for a few more minutes, before adding in the cauliflower and water, cover and bring to a boil. When the water boils, reduce the heat and cover and simmer until the cauliflower is tender. When the cauliflower is done, add in the chickpeas and simmer for 5 minutes. Then remove from the heat. Puree some of the soup in a blender and stir it back into the pot. Reheat, and then serve in bowls.


  1. I know just what you mean about someone giving you extra fruit and veg! My daughter has given me a cauliflower of gargantuan proportion - roughly the size of a basketball as they were on 2 for 1 at the farm shop, and it's sitting on the worksurface looking reproachful, next to the basket of quinces also brought back from a local shop by husband! Add to the fact that we've been unexpectedly invited out to eat this evening, I'm feeling a bit under seige! Soup sounds good.

  2. So lovely to hear from you Jane.
    Do hope your well.

    Sounds like you have a lot more fresh produce landing on your doorstep than me. If I lived nearby I would have offered to have taken the quince of your hands - never cooked with it ever, and don't think i've ever eaten it. So i'd be curious. Have a good weekend and yes, soup is good - many flavours combinations about.

  3. That sounds absolutely wonderful, am going to give it a try as soon as I can get a cauliflower. I make lots of soup at this time of the year to take to work for lunch and good chunky soups are ideal. Thanks for the recipe.

  4. Thank you so much Fran.
    I am so glad you like the sound of this recipe. Its quite simple, yet flavourful.
    It certainly is time for soup that is for sure.

  5. Sounds delightful. The curry flavour would go great with the cauliflour.
    Guess what, our broccoli is almost ready to pick! Its so exciting growing your own veggies isnt it! I end up checking them out every day :)


  6. so glad you like Rose.
    Yay - for homegrown produce - the flavour of your broc. will be intense compared to supermarket ones. Enjoy!

  7. Very goog idea chickpeas with cauliflower.

  8. This is a "must try" for me since I never know what to do with cauliflower...

    I've a question--can one use frozen bits of onion instead of fresh? Cutting up fresh has always been a weepy affair and one I'd rather avoid.

    Thanks and I hope you are both well!

  9. e,
    I've never really used dry, but understand where you are coming from. My answer would be yes of course it would be fine.

  10. old vegies are a great excuse for soup - I'd scrape off the yucky bits and enjoy it just the way you have

  11. mmm - I love cauliflower soups! definitely going to try this one. thanks! :)

  12. Sounds yum! Coincidentally I recently made a curried roasted cauli soup (on my blog) out of half a monster 3lb cauli I got locally for the princely sum of 49p. Now if I can train t'other half to bring me gifts like this... :-D

  13. Thanks Johanna.
    Best way to use veg. turning a little.

    Thanks Ali.
    Its a very warming soup.

    So good to hear from you.

    Coming over later to check out your version :)

  14. mmm, just the job on a cold autumnal day.


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