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It was a good day for soup … until it wasn’t … but then it was again

November 20, 2009

This morning the temperature was 38 degrees.  There was frost, for goodness sake.

This afternoon, the temperature was 62 degrees.  URGGGGHHHHH!

Not that I’m one to complain about sunshine, but a terrific sunny day like today is for grilling something, not for a steamy bowl of earthy comfort.  I swear, Missouri has the most bi-polar weather of any place I have ever lived.  I know for sure it’s the only place on earth where it can snow big, fat, lemon-sized snowflakes all day long and not a single one of them sticks to the ground.  That’s not really relevant though, it’s just something that irks me. 

What is relevant is soup.

I love soup.  I love to make soup.  I love to make up soups.  I love to ma ……… ok, you get the point.

This is a Grandma recipe, not my Grandma … but it tastes like home to me anyway.

Mrs. Marilyn’s Cauliflower & Cheese Soup with Leeks

In a big skillet:

  • Melt 1/4 cup butter over low heat
  • Add 1 cup thoroughly rinsed, chopped leeks

leeks hide lots of dirt between their layers

  • Add 2 small diced potatoes

potatoes should be diced "smallish"

  • Add 1 head cauliflower chopped in large pieces

cauliflower chopped "large-ish"

  • Cover and allow to cook for about fifteen minutes stirring occasionally

smells yummy

In the soup pot:

  • Melt 1/4 cup butter
  • Whisk 1/2 cup flour and 1 cup of whole milk in a bowl

milk & flour

  • When the butter is melted add 1 cup of whole milk and whisk
  • Add the flour/milk and whisk over medium heat until it is thick

being messy makes it taste better

  • Keep whisking until the flour stops tasting like flour – about 5 minutes
  • Add 1 and 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese and whisk until very smooth
  • Add 32 ounces of chicken broth, 1 cup of water and whisk
  • Reduce heat to low

Add vegetables to the liquid and allow soup to simmer for about thirty minutes for the flavors to come together.  Finish with a big handful of chopped parsley.

It’s only fair to tell you that today I tried using a 2% milk cheese.  The flavor was good, but it did affect the texture, making it a bit less appealing than the full on fatty-fat-fat cheese.  Fat or Texture … Texture or Fat … you will have to decide for yourself. 

Choose wisely, Grasshopper.

By supper-time, it was down in the forties again.  I told you it was a good day for soup. 

You’re welcome.

35 Comments leave one →
  1. November 20, 2009 3:25 am

    I love that I get to try all your entries into The Lemon Tart Blog! It tasted Marvelous!

    • November 20, 2009 3:45 am

      Me too! It’s so much more fun when you have somebody to share with! xoxo

      • November 20, 2009 11:10 pm

        Hi there,
        I first thought blogging is a waste of time but I’ve soon understood that blogging is one of the experiences that changes one’s views and presumptions.I’m glad I stopped by your blog.Keep going.
        My name is Aziz Moummou ,a teacher of English .
        Get me on :

        All the best,

  2. vodkabeforenoon permalink
    November 20, 2009 4:07 pm

    I love soup too and anything with Cauliflower is divine.

  3. November 20, 2009 4:20 pm

    Thank you. I love all the ingredients so must try it. There’s room for creativity considering various other cheeses one could use…
    Great instructions and photos.
    And the “bi-polar weather” comment was funny.

  4. November 20, 2009 4:54 pm

    That looks beautiful. I need to learn how to take pretty pictures of my food.

  5. Pretty Project] permalink
    November 20, 2009 4:55 pm

    That looks so yummy. I envy people who have the oomph to cook like this! 🙂

  6. November 20, 2009 5:30 pm

    MMmmmmm… I’m hungry.

  7. momromp permalink
    November 20, 2009 7:13 pm

    This is a lovely post – lovely pictures, lovely writing. The soup looks like the definition of comfort food. Thanks for a nice read.

  8. November 20, 2009 7:36 pm

    That looks lovely. Here are a couple of my favourite recepies.

  9. November 20, 2009 8:33 pm

    lazy indoor days are the best for soup – rainy, cold … yummy soup time!

  10. November 20, 2009 8:56 pm

    I love soup too and anything with Cauliflower is divine.

  11. November 20, 2009 9:07 pm

    strange soup, at least considering the recipes i’m used to

  12. November 21, 2009 1:17 am

    Hi! Saw your blog on the WordPress homepage and thought I’d check it out. I must correct you about Missouri being the only place with weird weather. When I first started reading this entry, I thought for sure you’d be from Texas. We have the same weirdness.

    The recipe looks great! I just described a much more simple recipe on my blog. Yours puts mine to shame!

  13. November 21, 2009 1:29 am

    I think my city is the most bi-polar! It’s infamous for having 4 seasons in 1 day.
    Today however was a soup kind of day, so delicious for keeping warm.

  14. mentemia permalink
    November 21, 2009 1:38 am

    Thanks for the recipe! I thought you were from Oklahoma, based on your weather comment. hehe

  15. November 21, 2009 2:03 am

    I like soup.. 🙂 I wish I could eat it 😉

  16. Laura permalink
    November 21, 2009 3:51 am

    mmmm, that looks tasty! I live in Northwest Arkansas, and we had the exact opposite weather today: perfect weather this morning, cold and wet and dreary this afternoon! I made soup for dinner, too, but I think I am going to try this recipe next time we make soup!

  17. November 21, 2009 4:28 am

    looks cool

  18. November 21, 2009 10:40 am

    Welcome to ! 🙂

  19. November 21, 2009 4:27 pm


    Congratulations for making it to Freshly Pressed! This looks like a good soup. I have a couple of questions and an addition of my own, with an explanation.

    First, the questions:

    ___ what size “dice” are the potato and cauliflower? The cauliflower is easier to guess, but the potatoes are not.

    ___ did you need to watch the soup well during the last 30 minutes on simmer as that’s a long time to have a milk-with-cheese concoction still on the stove?

    ___ how much did you need to stir it during that 30 minutes?

    ___ Usually this soup would go into a blender. Is yours left chunky? The photo shows what could be bread, but I’m not sure. Potato could have cooked down in the 30 minutes, but not cauliflower to the consistency this soup seems to be.

    Now, some thoughts from my blog reader’s perspective. In making the roux, I would always want to find something with less carbs or a way to have the glycemic index lessened. This can be done with a fat ratio, (like you using the whole milk), but that raises calories, too.

    I have been experimenting with other, more nutritious thickeners. In this case, if I were making this recipe, here’s what I would try to add more minerals, less carbs and calories and yet not be adding strange tastes, even though the suggested ingredients may seem like they would.

    As the thickener, with different timing and different process, I would add either Eden Foods agar flakes (follow package instructions) or I would add kelp powder (start near the end of cooking — add add 1 teaspoon at a time until you get the creamy consistency you want) (use Eden Foods kelp or wakame and powder in a food processor, or buy ground in an Asian market — less sure about the ecological purity of sources, if not from Eden Foods).

    The reason that I am experimenting to find ways to introduce westerners to using seaweeds is critically important, not just to diabetics, but to everyone. You can read more on the “why” in my trilogy:

    I hope you and your readers will benefit from this vital information.

    Best to all — Em

    • November 23, 2009 1:27 am

      Thanks Em~
      Let me see if I can answer your questions:
      (1) Dice the potatoes pretty small, less than an 1 inch cube. They are more for texture (as they will mostly cook down) than they are for substance.
      (2 & 3) I did stir every ten minutes or so and the soup did eventually try to come back up to a boil. Keep reducing the heat until it only steams – don’t let it boil again because you’re right – the fat in the cheese and milk will scorch on the bottom & ruin the soup.
      (4) I leave the soup chunky. The cauliflower breaks down some, but leaves enough of a bite to make it interesting. The cheese adds to the creamy texture that you would normally get from blemding.

      I love that you added the information on using seaweed. I have a serious iodine deficiency and alternate between seaweed supplements, seaweed (sheets), and iodoral tabs. I had not thought of using seaweed in this way – especailly in this soup. Thanks for the input and for the great links!

      ~ Ann

  20. mike permalink
    November 21, 2009 4:27 pm

    I definitely have to try this

  21. Danielle Olson permalink
    November 21, 2009 9:26 pm

    mmm…thanks for sharing! looks delicious.

  22. November 22, 2009 5:09 am

    very nice but makes me hungary now so l want to eat something now, thanks for sharing

  23. November 22, 2009 8:41 am

    Hey guys i was looking around at a few non profit orginizations that are being ran by a Rotary. And i found this
    one thats very interesting and i checked up on it, its called House Of Your Choice Raffle and its funded and ran
    by the Santa Clarita Rotary Club. Its fully legit fully legal and they have a raffle number and everything. Heres
    a link to there blog, hope you guys check it out and start following them. because i guess its an every year thing.
    I bought a few tickets myself.

    Also hey theres only 6 days left maybe the owner of this blog can post up something on there blogs to kinda help
    spread the word!

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  24. jae permalink
    November 22, 2009 8:54 pm

    looks very yummy-keep soupin!

  25. Tasha permalink
    November 22, 2009 11:07 pm

    I love your blog and that soup looks really good!!! 🙂

    checkout my blog if you want:

  26. November 23, 2009 12:22 am

    Ah this recipe is define, I simply love cauliflower like this!! must add that I am rather jealous of your temperatures, its currently 5 degrees here (UK) and I am feeling the cold :(((( This post warmed me up thou 🙂

  27. November 23, 2009 1:31 am

    Thanks everybody for leaving the comments. Seems like we are all having crazy weather these days – how funny! I just want to say how much I appreciate you taking the time to check out my blog since it’s very new and very skimpy. Please come back from time to time and I promise to have some great new things here as often as possible!

    🙂 Annie

  28. November 23, 2009 2:46 am

    ni have a nice day too to make soup..

  29. November 23, 2009 5:29 am

    Your photographs are incredible! They add a professionalism to your posts! I am inspired to do a much better job with the photos on my blog. Thank you!

  30. November 23, 2009 9:24 am

    Thank you very much for those items.I will try everyone of it.After reading all the comments here i am convinced that it will be very cool.Best wishes fore this site.

  31. givenchance permalink
    November 23, 2009 10:46 am

    i like soups too! especially when a weather is cold and rainy, it is so pleasant to sit at warm place with a plate of soup and just relax!


  1. Mrs. Marilyn’s Cauliflower & Cheese Soup with Leeks « Paneful's Greasy Spoon

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