Detour: Dairy Free Cream of Broccoli Soup

Today I was supposed to post my kimchi recipe… but seeing that things don’t always go as planned, I have to delay that post until next Monday.  Tune in to check out my recipe and my kimchi making experience.

For today’s actual recipe, I have a wonderful detour planned.  It’s my dairy free cream of broccoli soup.  I thought this soup up years ago when I was missing eating “cream of anything” soup.  The dairy in cream based soups can really upset some people’s stomachs, and for others, it can just be too heavy.

My dairy free variation uses pureed cauliflower as the “cream soup” base.  I’ve used this base to make cream of broccoli soup, as in today recipe, vegetable chowders and cream of mushroom soup.  Surprisingly, the cauliflower has a really neutral flavour once its blended and the soup takes on the flavour of what added to it.

Another great thing about this recipe is that it’s a double whammy of Brassica veggies in one dish.  It’s an easy, but different, way to get a good helping of cauliflower and broccoli.

Here’s the recipe…

Dairy Free Cream of Broccoli Soup

2 heads of cauliflower, washed and chopped coarsely

1 head of broccoli, washed and chopped finely

water

veggie or chicken stock or almond milk (*optional)

sea salt

olive oil

Boil 2 heads of chopped cauliflower until very soft.  At the same time, boil the broccoli until tender crisp.

Strain cauliflower and puree in batches in a blender, with a little bit of water, veggie or chicken stock or almond milk if needed to assist the blending process going.  Using a stock will help give more flavour to the base, whereas using almond milk will make it richer and more cream-like.  The puree should be thick and smooth, not watery.

Pour the pureed cauliflower back into a large soup pot.  A little at a time, stir in water, veggie or chicken stock or almond milk and continue to add and stir until the soup is at a consistency that is preferred.   The more liquid that is added the thinner the cream soup.  For a thicker soup, use less liquid.

Strain the cooked broccoli pieces and stir them into the cauliflower cream base.  Simmer all together until the soup is throughly heated.

Season with sea salt to taste.  Drizzle a swirl of olive oil on top and stir in.

Enjoy!

Additional flavours:  this can be jazzed up further by using other spices and flavours.  In a separate pan, a little garlic and onions can be browned and then added to the blender at the time the cauliflower is pureed.  Powdered sage and/or thyme could also be added to give the soup a savoury spice up.  Black pepper can be added to give the soup some kick.  Finally, curry powder and cauliflower are a match made in heaven… this can be sprinkled into the finished soup.

Veggie Chowder and Cream of Mushroom Soup variation:  In a separate pan, sautee onions, chopped celery, peas, corn, finely chopped red bell pepper and any other veggies that top your list for a veggie chowder.  Similarly, a variety of mushrooms can be sautéed, on their own or as a medley, with some finely chopped onion, garlic and thyme to create a dairy free cream of mushroom soup using this recipe.

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