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'Tis the season - not just the post-Christmas season, but also the "save some money on groceries" season and the "I don't have time to cook" season. This recipe is a fix for both of those issues. It's easy on the pocketbook and takes very little time. Your children might actually eat cauliflower, too, if you don't mention the name of the soup. I almost skipped the homemade croutons and subbed store-bought, but if you have time, definitely make the croutons. They are delicious.


Creamy Cauliflower Soup

4-6 servings
Croutons About 6 oz. whole grain bread, cut into ½-inch cubes (I used five slices, including the "heel")
2 T. unsalted butter, melted
2 T. olive oil
1 T. Dijon mustard
Kosher or sea salt
2 T. unsalted butter
2 shallots, minced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
Kosher or sea salt
1 medium potato, peeled and diced into ¼-inch cubes
2 cloves garlic, minced
3½ cups vegetable broth
½ head cauliflower, chopped into small florets
2/3 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, plus more for garnish
2 t. Dijon mustard
 To make the croutons, preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Add the bread cubes to a medium bowl and toss with the melted butter, olive oil, and mustard until evenly coated.  Spread the bread cubes out in an even layer on a baking sheet and sprinkle with the salt.  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until crunchy.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add the shallots and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 4-5 minutes.  Season with salt, then mix in the potato, garlic and chicken broth.  Cover the pot and bring to a boil.  Lower the heat to a simmer, keep covered, and let cook for about 8 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.  Add the cauliflower and cook about 5-6 minutes more, until the cauliflower is tender.  Stir in the cheese and mustard.
Puree with an immersion blender (or a food processor, vented to allow the steam to escape).  Mix in additional water or broth if the soup is too thick.  Season with additional salt to taste.  Serve warm topped with additional shredded cheese and the croutons.
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Copyright 2018 Barbara Stein