- 1 head (approx. 2 pounds) cauliflower
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 1 leek, white and light green parts only, halved and thinly sliced
- 1 small onion, halved and thinly sliced
- salt & pepper
- 4 1/2 cups water
- 1/2 teaspoon white wine or sherry vinegar
- 3 tablespoons fresh chives, snipped
- Trim the cauliflower, removing any green leaves and leaf stems. Remove stem and core; trim and slice into thin pieces. Cut 1 1/2 cups of small florets and set aside for later. Coarsely cut the rest of cauliflower into thick slices and chunks.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of butter into a large saucepan set over medium low heat. Add onion, leek, and a pinch of salt and saute until softened, about 7-10 minutes.
- Add water and increase heat to high. Add the half the cauliflower chunks and the stem pieces; bring to a boil, then reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Let simmer gently for 15 minutes, then add other remaining cauliflower chunks and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until cauliflower is crumbly and tender.
- Meanwhile, melt the remaining 5 tablespoons of butter in a pan. When butter is melted and frothy, add the reserved florets. Cook over medium heat until the florets and the butter are both browned, stirring occasionally, about 12 to 14 minutes minutes. Transfer the florets with a slotted spoon to a small bowl; toss with vinegar and coarse sea salt. Pour browned butter into a small bowl and set aside.
- Ladle soup into blender and puree until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids). Return soup to the saucepan over medium-low heat until heated through. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Additionally, you may choose to add up to a 1/2 cup more of water if desired for a thinner consistency. To serve, ladle into serving bowls and garnish with florets, snipped chives, and freshly ground black pepper; drizzle with browned butter and serve.
Yield: 3-4 servings
Total Time: 1 hour