It’s snowing! It’s not even Halloween and we’re having our first snowfall here. I thought fall was in the air, which has made me crave soup lately, but since it’s apparently winter instead, I went past craving and straight to making.
Last weekend, a friend of mine brought some Leek and Potato (yes! real potatoes – shhh…) soup to share and I indulged a bit. I was reminded how much I love that soup and decided to try my hand at a paleo variation.
This one is warm and cozy with a woodsy flavor from the rosemary and I love the sweet pops of roasted squash and crunch from the bacon. I even ate it for breakfast this morning with an egg on top. It was delicious! You can use fresh cauliflower if you want, but this is one of those times that you don’t need to bother. Let me know what you think.
Leek and Cauli-Squash Soup
4 slices of bacon, chopped
2 cups of peeled butternut squash, cut in 1/2 in. cubes
1 large leek
16 oz. bag of frozen cauliflower
2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups of water
1 T. fresh rosemary, minced
2 scallions, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 425. Begin browning bacon in a large pot on the stove over medium heat.
2. While bacon is browning, peel your butternut squash and cut into 1/2 in. cubes. (Or get pre-cut squash to make it even faster!) Take 1 T. of the bacon grease from the rendering bacon and toss it with the squash in a 9×13 baking pan. Sprinkle in about 1/2 tsp. of salt and roast in the 425 oven for about 20 minutes, stirring periodically, until beginning to brown and caramelize. Once done, remove from the oven and set aside.
3. Cut off the root end of the leek and slice it lengthwise. Rinse it thoroughly under water, being sure to separate the layers and rinse out any dirt. Slice the leek halves into crescents about 1/4 inch thick.
4. Remove the now crispy bacon to a separate plate and set aside. Remove and save for later most of the bacon grease in the pot, leaving behind about 1 T. Add the sliced leeks to the bacon grease and sauté until beginning to soften.
5. Add the bag of cauliflower – frozen is fine – to the leeks and add about a 1/2 tsp. of salt. Cook for about 5 minutes.
6. Once the cauliflower begins to soften, add 2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth and 2 cups of water. Add 1 T. of chopped rosemary to the mix and bring to a boil. Cook the cauliflower for about 10 minutes and then puree until smooth with an immersion blender. (You could certainly do this step in a regular blender, just be careful with hot liquids.)
7. Add the roasted squash cubes and stir to combine.
8. Taste to check for seasoning. You may need a generous amount of salt, depending on the kind of broth that you use.
9. Serve sprinkled with scallions and bacon.