Cruciferous Soup Goes Mediterranean (aka, Roasted Cauliflower Soup with Parmigiana and Pesto)

Friday, October 18, 2013

Apparently I have a lot to say about pesto this week. If you’re just tuning in to The Nutrition Doctor is In the Kitchen, that’s because I took advantage of the last-of-the-season basil at the farmers’ market to whir up a big batch of pesto to get into the freezer for the winter. (The cooking video is here.) I’m even working on a photo montage starring this fabulous sauce for your food porn pleasure—if you’re into that kind of thing.

Of course, I also kept some pesto in the fridge for this week’s suppers, which brings me to today’s luscious dish.

Roasted vegetable soups are one of my specialities, and autumn is the time they come into full swing. Last week I made my first cauliflower soup of the season using both white and Roman cauliflower (explaining its lovely green tinge). My husband and I had already enjoyed a bowl for supper in traditional style, which is to say with a few whole grain croutons and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese and scallions. I do so love creamy cauliflower soup, so if you do, too, make sure to check out my recipes for the classic (roasted cauliflower goes solo), elegant (cauliflower meets up with artichokes and leeks), and dual crucifer (broccoli and cauliflower) variants here on my blog. These soups are super easy to make and oh-so-tasty. They also freeze well, which is key for busy people like you and me.

Anyway, as it turns out, I still had a quart of soup leftover, which came in mighty handy this past Monday when I didn’t have time to cook. Remembering I also had freshly made pesto in the fridge, I simply heated the soup, dolloped pesto, sprinkled freshly grated parmigiania, drizzled extra virgin olive oil, and cracked black pepper and—Voilà!—a wonderful weeknight’s dinner was on the table in ten minutes. (And the time it took to warm the soup gave me the space to make a salad to complete the meal.)

Rich and satisfying, adding pesto and parmigiania made this soup feel like a totally different dish than its non-pestoed (go with it) sibling. Well, not totally different, I suppose, but a spoonful of garlicky herbaceous goodness did make it particularly delectable. And pesto would have this sublime effect on any number of soups, tomato basil—an obvious choice—and beyond.

Just one more way to bring a little pesto love into your life.

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Dr. P. K. Newby is a nutrition scientist, speaker, and author with expertise in all things food, farm to fork, whether preventing obesity and other chronic diseases through diet or teaching planet-conscious eating. As a health expert and food personality, she brings together her passions for food, cooking, science, and sustainability to educate and inspire, helping people eat their way towards better health, one delectable bite at a time. Because healthy food shouldn’t suck.

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