Cauliflower Bacon Soup

Cauliflower Bacon Soup is a delicious, heart warming soup that’s perfect as a weeknight meal or decadent enough for an impromptu party!

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Soup is good for the soul.

Even when it’s 83 degrees outside.

Does anyone know if it is really fall? Or are we just going to sweat our asses off until Christmas? Santa might be delivering presents on a giant boat wearing flip-floppies with mermaids instead of reindeer. Wouldn’t that be quite the holiday surprise?

Anyway, I don’t mind slurping soup year round. It’s an easy dish to make when you just need a little comfort from this crazy world. With the 4,386 variations of soups, it’s hardly a dish I will ever grow tired of unless you make me cilantro soup. Then I might have to destroy you with a lightsabor.

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Well, the soup recipe I am sharing with you today comes with no altercations. In fact, this Cauliflower Bacon Soup from my friend, Jen’s (author of the blog Savory Simple) new cookbook, The Gourmet Kitchen might actually bring world peace. It’s that effing good.

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The first time I met Jen was back at Mixed Con in 2012. It was my first time attending a food blog conference and I had no idea what to expect or who I would meet. I remember knowing of Jen’s blog because of 1) her stunning photography, 2) her delicious recipes, and 3) her fantastic humor. Carrie from Bakeaholic Mama introduced us and I will never forget Jen saying that she knew who I was! I about died from shock, but I was also humbled because Jen was so wonderful and welcoming.

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And from there, our blogging friendship has continued over these past four years. Which is why I am so excited for the release of her cookbook. The Gourmet Kitchen is not only full of drool-worthy recipes and photos, but every dish is extremely approachable. Jen has a culinary background and with her talent she makes these gourmet recipes that make you a better cook and really expand your palate. Can you say wining?!

So once you get your hands on her book, you’ve got to make the Cauliflower Bacon Soup. The dish comes together in an hour, but packs a ton of flavor. Serve it as an appetizer for Thanksgiving or hoard it for yourself to nibble on all week long. Just be warned, if someone finds your stash, you might have to use a lightsabor to fight them off.

Congrats, Jen!! You’ve out done yourself!

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Cauliflower Bacon Soup

Ingredients:

5 strips uncooked bacon, diced small
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion (approximately 1 large)
3/4 cups chopped celery (approximately 2 ribs)
kosher salt
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 head cauliflower, chopped
3 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
1/2 cup whole milk (plus more to think if desired)
Ground black pepper

Directions:

In a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottom saucepan, render some of the fat from the bacon over low heat for several minutes. Once there’s a solid layer of fat in the pan, turn the heat to medium-low and cook the bacon until crisp. Use tongs to remove the bacon and allow it to drain on paper towels. Discard all but approximately 3 tablespoons of the bacon fat (don’t worry if there’s less than 3 tablespoons; some brands are less fatty than others.)
Keep a small of cup water nearby. Add the onion and celery to the pan with a pinch of salt and sweat the vegetables for several minutes on medium-low heat. A brown glaze will begin forming on the bottom of the pan. Add 1 tablespoon of the reserved water to deglaze, stirring the brown bits back into the vegetables. Repeat this process for 10 minutes, until the vegetables have caramelized nicely, then deglaze with the wine.
Add the garlic and cauliflower, and turn the heat to medium. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, stirring periodically, until the cauliflower has softened. Add the chicken stock and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Allow the soup to simmer on low heat for 60 minutes.
Carefully ladle the soup into a blender and puree, in batches if necessary, until silky. Return the soup to the pan and add the milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reheat the reserved bacon briefly in a sauté pan and use it to garnish each bowl of soup!

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