In Los Angeles, where cocktail dresses pass for day wear and executives wear flip-flops to board meetings, this soup follows suit dressed up with a dollop of caviar or modestly sipped from a coffee cup. Down-to-earth and stylish at the same time, cauliflower and potato are pureed into a smooth, winter-white soup. Thickened with potatoes and just a bit of cream, the mouthfeel is silky without tasting too rich. Creamed Cauliflower Soup doubles as a luxurious sauce pooled under seared scallops. Serve with smoked salmon, watercress salad or crusty French bread.
Makes 8 cups


  • 2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 onion, halved and sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1 head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), coarsely chopped, including stems
  • 2 bay leaves, preferably fresh
  • 1 tsp. coarse salt, plus more for serving
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving
  • 1 1/2 quarts low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 Idaho potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup heavy cream


Coat a soup pot with the oil and place over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion, garlic, cauliflower and bay leaves. Cook and stir until the vegetables begin to soften but do not brown, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour in the broth, increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the potatoes and continue to cook until fork-tender, 10 to 15 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-low, pour in the cream and gently simmer until thickened slightly, about 5 minutes.

Working in batches, ladle the soup into a blender, filling it no more than halfway. Puree for a few seconds until completely smooth; be sure to hold down the lid with a kitchen towel for safety. If you have an immersion blender, this is a great time to use it.

If desired, pass the soup through a fine-mesh strainer into a terrine or other pot, pushing the solids with the back of a wooden spoon. Discard the vegetable pieces. Repeat with the remaining soup.

Divide among soup bowls or coffee cups. Season each serving with a pinch of salt and pepper.

From The Lemonade Cookbook by Alan Jackson and JoAnn Cianciulli. Copyright © 2013 by Alan Jackson and Joann Cianciulli and reprinted by permission of St. Martin's Press, LLC.

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