Lamb and cauliflower soup.

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cauliflower
  • Good lamb stock, preferably home made using about 1kg/2lb bones.
  • 1 cauliflower
  • salt and pepper.
  1. Ideally, make your own stock from some lamb bones.  Roast them first for about 20 mins, drain off the fat then more or less cover with water and leave to boil for 2 -3 hours.  Strain the liquid.  If there are obvious bits of meat, pick them off and add to the stock.
  2. Chop up the cauliflower, stump and all, and a few leaves if they aren’t too woody.
  3. Bung in the stock, bring to the boil.
  4. When the cauliflower is tender, whizz using a hand held blender.  Add salt to taste and plenty of black pepper.
  5. Serve.

Cauliflower really is the most wonderful vegetable. Boring just steamed or boiled without salt, but the moment things are added, the vegetable takes up the flavourings and joyous things happen to our taste buds.  So if just boiling or steaming it, try sprinkling a little ground cumin over it, then when it is done, roll it about in a little olive oil or butter, add the salt and maybe pepper – or cayenne pepper, and this simple vegetable starts to compete with Pringles.  Caulis can be roasted – alone or with small bits of potato.  They can be puréed – in comparison to mashed spuds, puréed cauli is like comparing a Golf to a Porsche.  Both nice cars, but one rather stodgy.

Every week, I get a bag of organic bones from Abel and Cole.  I make a simple stock and then add a vegetable to make a soup.  Very cheering in this interminable, grey winter.  I have tried all sorts of veg, and the soup is fine, but not good enough to make for a recipe page!  This week, I ordered lamb bones and an extra cauli.  And was blown away by the resulting soup.  Yes, of course flavourings can be added, like carrots, celery, bay leaves and so on.  And the best of these probably will be the bay leaf, now I think about it.  But adding things adds faff time, and the less we faff about, the more we are likely to do something, hence why I don’t bother fiddling about with the flavourings.  My main problem to overcome is that by picking off bits of meat, no matter how much I try, I always end up with small bits of bone in the soup, which you don’t know about until zapping the soup with the blender and you hear the dreaded clunk, clunk of a bone.  I suppose the answer is to strain it.  Or you strain it with your teeth, which is what I normally end up doing.

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