Among the many gifts of the Autumn season, hot soup in warm mugs on cold afternoons and evenings sits at the top of my list. I wait for this all year.
In my house, (as is probably true for many of you too), we have a variety of dietary constraints. I’ve got nut-free, people, dairy-free people, people who only like chicken nuggets or pizza, my husband eats a Keto diet, while I am supposed to eat gluten-free (ahem). Needless to say, feeding everyone has it’s challenges, as I don’t believe in making 6 separate dinners. Nope. No way. I won’t do it.
Enter soup season. The one-pot wonder meal that feeds us all. Soups are a lot like casseroles, in that they all seem to include various ingredients that someone in my house cannot eat. Because of this, I’ve taken to adapting practically every recipe I discover, in order to feed all of us the same thing. I find this sort of kitchen play brings me delight and reminds me that sometimes, coloring, or in this case, cooking outside of the lines can be freeing and fun. Of course, not every adaptation goes down as a win. But the more you play the game, the better you get at it, right? *Wink*
The other week, as my grocery stockpile ran low, I found I had everything necessary to make this Cauliflower soup recipe. Of course, I would still have to adapt it, but one glance at the ingredients and I knew I could manage it.
First, this recipe begins with bacon. Of course it does. Every worthy savory recipe begins with bacon.
Last time our local Fresh Thyme had their fresh sliced, thick cut, peppered edged bacon on sale for $2.77 a lb, I bought an entire box of it. At home, I divided all 15 lbs into freezer bags and stored it away. I think the peppered-edge bacon added an extra something special to this soup.
After the bacon began to cook, I looked over the recipe to see what I was going to have to change in order to accommodate the various food constraints in my house. The original recipe called for whole milk, but I substituted my favorite So Delicious® unsweetened coconut milk and it did NOT add any coconut-y flavor to the soup. Not even a hint of it. The only difference I noticed was that the soup, which began as a chowder recipe was less creamy than it would have been had I used whole milk. This however, was not a big deal to my people.
The other major change I made was that I used gluten-free flour, and less than the recipe called for, because of my husbands super low-carb diet. Again, the only thing this affected was the creaminess of the soup.
After hanging out outside with our neighbors in the cold, this Cauliflower soup was just what we needed to warm our bones. Everyone ate it and loved it, including the chicken nugget connoisseur in my house, which is saying a lot.
I can see multiple ways to adapt this soup recipe. Add roasted red peppers. Add cheese (if you’re not dairy free). Add sausage, and other veggies you love–be creative, have fun and enjoy.
- 2 Carrots (diced)
- 1 Onion (diced)
- 3 Ribs of celery (diced)
- 4 TBSP Butter (or Ghee or Olive Oil for Dairy Free version)
- 1LB Bacon
- 1 TBSP Minced Garlic (about 2 cloves)
- 1 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Milk I like SoDelicious brand)
- 1/4 cup Chopped Italian Parsley
- 4 Cups Chicken Stock
- Kosher Salt & Pepper
- 1 Head Cauliflower (Roughly chopped)
- 1/4 cup Flour (or gluten-free flour)
- In a large dutch oven or soup pot, cook chopped bacon until crispy. Drain bacon onto paper towels and set aside. Reserve some of the bacon grease in the pan for sautéing your veggies.
- Add butter (or Ghee or Olive oil) diced celery, onions, garlic and carrots to dutch oven. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Add in chopped cauliflower and continue to cook until veggies are tender and browning.
- Add in Chicken stock and coconut milk. Whisk in Gluten-free flour, stirring until blended.
- Add in chopped parsley, salt & pepper (to taste)
- Bring to a boil, then simmer for 30-45 Min.
- Serve soup with crumbled bacon on top.
- For an added oomph, sprinkle with parmesan cheese