Here’s One I Prepared Earlier…

August 7, 2009 at 4:49 am (Uncategorized)

Because our brief sojourn on the ski slopes was the very last word in spontaneous, I left food in the fridge at home, and when I opened its door Tuesday, I realised I had a slightly tired cauliflower and some, shall we say, piquey red capsicums on my hands. Urgent intervention was required if I was to avoid chucking the lot in the bin, something I absolutely hate doing because I can’t abide wastefulness in anything but words, which I routinely jettison in vast quantities without a second thought. Foodstuffs are another matter entirely. I get waste regret. So I oiled up the capsicums whole and chucked them in the oven. Easy. When they were done – the skin blistered black in parts – I deseeded them and the skin simply fell away, leaving the sweetest red capsicum I then sliced and mixed together with diced avocado and tomato (both from Man Town’s small but good farmers’ market – it is so exciting having flavourful tom-toms again. Remember the tomatoes of your childhood? Where did they go?) with a dash of balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper for a really simple but damn tasty side salad. I didn’t really have the time or inclination to follow my cauliflower and truffle oil soup recipe, so I cheated. I cheated big time. I cheated to such a degree it can hardly be called cooking. But the results were fantastic, delicious enough that I no longer think I’ll ever refer to the recipe ever again. Why would you? I skipped every step and I could swear the resulting soup was in no way inferior to the version that takes considerably more time and effort to prepare. It was such a revelation I am going to share it with you so you too can just cheat and eat.

I put an onion in the freezer. I pulled the cauliflower apart and threw it in a big stainless steel pot. Peeled two large potatoes, cut them into large pieces, threw them in the pot. Peeled several cloves of garlic, threw them into the pot whole. I removed my onion from the freezer, sliced it (no tears!) and threw it into the pot. I only had about 500 mls each of chicken and vegetable stock to hand (the recipe calls for 1 l of vegetable stock, but do we care? No. We do not.), and in they went. That didn’t quite cover the vegetables, so I added water until it did. Then I put it on the stove on a medium heat with the lid on and I left it there.

I don’t know how long I was gone, 40 minutes, maybe less. But when I returned, it was bubbling away and all the vegetables were cooked. I removed it from the heat. I liberally seasoned it, dumped in a tub of sour cream, drizzled in some truffle oil, and then blended it all together with my Bamix. How I love that thing. And then my soup was done. Rich, creamy, velvety, delicious, special seeming – quite a sophisticated looking soup, I gotta tell ya – and yet about the simplest thing to ever come out of the kitchen at Chez J. A triumph of laziness. So go ahead and cheat when your time and inclination are tested; I promise I won’t tell.

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2 Comments

  1. litlove said,

    Yum sounds wonderful! I can recommend steam cooking a whole head of cauliflower in a soup of tomatoes, red onions, garlic and black olives. You just stick everything together in a saucepan with some water and a slurp of red wine vinegar, put the cauliflower in the middle, lid on top, leave it for 45 mins or so, et voila.

  2. doctordi said,

    That also sounds obscenely simple, Litlove, as well as lovely and wintry….

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