The unending allure of cat fluff.
Ack! Okay, mes amis, the day is coming to a close and I have yet to get any legitimate writing done. I will not rush this – I am always rushing about at eleven o’clock in the evening and I have to wonder if it isn’t an unhealthful thing to do. There is plenty of time to write five hundred words and put some sort of substance in them.
Like cauliflower. I found myself with a head of cauliflower and this oddball taste for cauliflower soup. This is not something we grew up with, so I can’t claim it was a craving borne out of nostalgia. Perhaps some evening I watched them making it on America’s Test Kitchen, I’m not sure. Wherever it came from, it coincided with a craving for creme fraiche. Obviously, (obviously?), I didn’t grow up with fancy ingredients in 99% of our meals. Eating something like a caper or a pate always took place with a little dose of suspicion because you just never could tell. Growing up, in fits and starts, I’ve expanded that palette so that now and again I’ll buy an ingredient just because I know it makes everything taste better than the blue-collar, factory-frozen, salted to oblivion, prepackaged food that typifies my diet. Just for kicks. But I didn’t really have a plan for it.
The recipe took care of both of them in one quick stock pot. It’s essentially, cooking up some onions and garlic with butter and olive oil and another ingredient I consider to have cache – a goddamned bay leaf, before adding 3 cups of stock. I used water and added the bouillon-type stock starter powder I have. Brought it all to a boil and then added the chopped up head of cauliflower. Cooked that on a heavy simmer for half an hour, used a magical immersion blender and suddenly, thick, velvety soup. Added in a few dollops of creme fraiche and a sprinkle of dill and I felt like, I don’t know, the Barefoot Contessa? I’ve seen it done with leeks as well, and would like to try that. I don’t think I’ve ever cooked leeks.
The official recipe is here: http://www.theharriedcook.com/2011/05/cauliflower-soup-with-creme-fraiche.html and the lovely photos on that blog are not unlike my effort at all, which made me pretty happy.
Not eating breakfast and having this for lunch with a ton of bread and then a ricey, soupy, chicken for dinner with cheese is not making my daily totals look great. But I have to feel much better that the calories for today all came from kitchen experimentation and not out of a paper bag with Chipotle written on the side. I did my ten minutes, I did my situps, I didn’t lose focus. So, booyah.
And then! Then! Skyping with the absolute lovelies about Seattle which is shaping up to look just like what I need (I can’t say I need a vacation after just coming back from 2 weeks off, but I think come May, I will need just this – a plane ride and an adventure on the horizon. A short-term goal for head, heart and the canister that hauls them both about.