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Roasted Cauliflower-and-Garlic Soup

- Photo: Hector Sanchez; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas
Photo: Hector Sanchez; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

Roasting cauliflower brings out a delicious nutty flavor and gives the soup a gorgeous silky texture. Prepare the soup through Step 4 up to two days ahead. Let cool; cover and chill. Reheat just before you're ready to serve. Serve the soup as a seated starter while your turkey rests.

Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Yields: Makes 6 to 8 servings

Ingredients

1 large head cauliflower (about 2 1/2 lb.)

4 1/2 teaspoons olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided

3 garlic cloves, unpeeled

3 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

1 cup 2% reduced-fat milk

1/2 cup grated Manchego or Parmesan cheese

Freshly ground black pepper

Garnishes: olive oil, pomegranate seeds, fresh thyme leaves

How to Make It

Preheat oven to 425°. Cut cauliflower into 2-inch florets; toss with olive oil and 1/2 tsp. salt. Arrange florets in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan. Wrap garlic cloves in aluminum foil, and place on jelly-roll pan with cauliflower.

Bake at 425° for 30 to 40 minutes or until cauliflower is golden brown, tossing cauliflower every 15 minutes.

Transfer cauliflower to a large Dutch oven. Unwrap garlic, and cool 5 minutes. Peel garlic, and add to cauliflower. Add stock, and bring to a simmer over medium heat; simmer, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Let mixture cool 10 minutes.

Process cauliflower mixture, in batches, in a blender until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides as needed.

Return cauliflower mixture to Dutch oven; stir in milk, cheese, and remaining 1 tsp. salt. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Add pepper to taste.

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