Caramelized Cauliflower and Onion Soup
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus additional for drizzling
- 1 large onion, roughly chopped
- 1 large head cauliflower, chopped into small bits
- 2 ribs celery, sliced
- 3 large cloves garlic, chopped or grated
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed and roughly chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6 cups chicken stock (add more or less depending on how thick you like your soup)
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 1/2 baguette, sliced on an angle (about 1/2-inch thick)
- 1/2 cup walnut halves
- 8 ounces gorgonzola cheese
- Place a large soup pot over medium-high heat with the EVOO. Once the EVOO is hot, add the onion and cook until it begins to caramelize. Add the cauliflower and celery and cook, stirring frequently, for 8-10 minutes, until the veggies are nice and brown.
- Add the garlic, thyme, and some salt and freshly ground black pepper and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes. Add about 1 cup of the chicken stock and scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pot.
- Remove the pot from the heat and, working in batches, transfer to a food processor. Puree until completely smooth, adding a little splash of stock to moisten the mixture if necessary.
- Once the cauliflower is nice and smooth, transfer the puree back to the soup pot and add enough chicken stock to achieve a thick soup consistency, anywhere from 3-5 cups. Turn the heat back to medium-high, add the bay leaf and bring up to a bubble. Simmer for 5-10 minutes.
- While the soup is simmering, make the gorgonzola toasts: place the baguette slices on a cookie sheet, drizzle with a little EVOO and season with some freshly ground black pepper. Add the walnut halves to one corner of the cookie sheet. Transfer to the oven and cook until the bread and nuts are toasted and golden, a couple of minutes. Remove the toasted nuts to your cutting board, give them a rough chop and reserve.
- Flip the toasts over, spread on some of the gorgonzola, then return them to the oven for a few minutes to warm up the cheese. Remove the toast from the oven and sprinkle with the walnuts.
- Remove bay leaf from the soup and discard. Ladle the soup into bowls, top each portion with a gorgonzola toast and serve.