Spending my first week with Pollan's Food Rules basically contemplating and being more aware of what is around me and what goes in my body, I stumbled across Gordon Ramsay's recipe for the easiest broccoli soup on the planet. Published in a blog, The Cooking Route, I have already made this recipe twice with some fun twists and turns, both times with delicious results.
2 lb broccoli
2-3 cups cooking water
salt & pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese (not optional, imo)
olive oil (optional)
One of my tweaks included roasting an entire head of garlic. Peel back the paper on the outside so there is only one thin layer around the outside cloves, cut off the top about .5" down so the tops of the cloves are exposed.
Place in baking container. I used the Le Creuset ramekins B gave me for Christmas, but you can also use muffin tins or almost any oven proof container. Drizzle olive oil on top.
Cover with foil and bake at 400F for 30-40 minutes.
I added a couple roasted heads to the soup, and saved the rest for cooking later in the week. Beautifully roasted garlic will last a heck of a long time in the fridge. It's nice to keep some handy for whatevs.
For the soup, bring the water to boil and chop broccoli florets and stems. Boil until soft, 10-15 minutes. Drain and reserve cooking water. Do not forget to reserve cooking water.
If you plunge the cooked broccoli into an ice water bath, the beautiful bright green will stay green instead of turn that weird slightly grey color one sometimes sees in cooked broccoli.
I pureed the cooked broccoli in my Braun. You are supposed to now add 2-3 cups of the cooking water to the puree to make the soup. Personally, I threw my water away automatically. D'oh! To liquify the puree, I added boxed chicken stock. Jeez.
It was also at this point that I added two large cloves of roasted garlic and instead of regular salt I added a teaspoon of truffle salt. This truffle salt is a brand called Fusion, a gift from my good friend K. It actually contains real truffle, much to the shock of those who like to say no truffle products contain real truffle. This one does. It's a beautiful, earthy treat.
On top, I sprinkled cotija cheese. I had some left from making pork chile verde...the cotija was slightly dry, salty and delicious.
The other night using the same recipe, I substituted cauliflower and added roasted shiitakes along with a couple cloves of the roasted garlic. Also fantastic. I will be carrying cauliflower soup to work this week for lunch, warm soup on the upcoming rainy days sans can. Thanks, Gordon.