" I truly think it is best to be a robin lightly dressed concocting soup inside my nest" ~Maurice Sendak

Cream of the Crop

I miss making homemade soup in the summer but we recently had a cool rainy day, so I grabbed the opportunity to make a pot of cauliflower potato soup.

The local produce is reaching its peak a this time of year.
I bought a head of cauliflower this week that was the biggest I have ever seen in my life!
You just cant beat the quality and price of buying locally.
You can vary the texture of the soup by pureeing all of it or just half or so.
Adjusting the amount of cheese will determine whether it is thick and hearty or thin and light.

This soup makes a nice light meal with a garden salad and a slice of whole grain bread.
It tastes even better the next day and freezes well.

Cream of Cauliflower, Potato and Cheese Soup

  • 1 large head of cauliflower coarsely chopped
  • 4 small potatoes peeled and diced
  • 2 cup of chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp each of olive oil and butter
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme minced
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 3 cups of milk
  • splash of white wine
  • 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
  • fresh minced parsley to garnish
  • salt and pepper
In a large soup pot cook the cauliflower and potato in the chicken broth until tender.
Meanwhile in a smaller pot heat a the oil and butter and cook the onion, thyme and garlic until soft. Stir in flour and cook until smooth.
Gradually whisk in milk and wine and cook until thickened.
Pour into the large pot of broth and vegetables.
Mix well and reduce heat to low.
Use an immersion blender to puree to your desired consistency. Our you can process in a food processor)
Add the cheese and stir until melted through.
Season to taste and serve with fresh parsley sprinkled on top.


Sittin' On The Can

We just returned from vacation to Ottawa and Montreal and I am finding it a bit hard to get back into the swing of things.

I guess I got a little lazy eating out at great restaurants and at friends throughout the week. Between the heat and still being in vacation mode I haven't been too enthusiastic about cooking until I came across a cool gadget called a vertical chicken roaster. I'm sure you all have heard of beer can chicken, where you take half a can of beer and place a whole chicken on top and put it on the barbecue. This is the same thing but with more stability. It is optional to use a can or not in the center. I think the chicken perched on the can looks quite comical.

My twin daughters created the barbecue sauce I used to baste the chicken. It has a bit of heat to it that blended well with the flavor of the beer I used in the can.

Vertical Roasted Beer Can Chicken with Spicy Sauce

  • 1- 3 to 4 pound chicken
  • half a can of beer
  • ~olive oil
Spicy Sauce
  • 8 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 4 Tbsp ketchup
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp southwest spice mix or chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle sauce
  • 1 tsp salt

Rinse and pat the chicken dry. Place over a half a can of beer or a vertical chicken roaster with the can of beer in the center. Rub with olive oil. Place on a barbecue preheated to medium. Roast for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 half hour until until internal temperature reaches 180F. After the first half hour begin basting the chicken with the sauce. Using oven mitts remove roaster with chicken from barbecue and let stand for 10 minutes then carefully remove from the roaster.

Cut into serving pieces and serve immediately.

Wine Suggestion: Riesling