Have you ever noticed that most of my soups have an orange or red glow about them? That is because I adore curry and put it in just about everything! My love affair with this generically termed spice blend started around 2005 when one of my close friends asked me to help open and serve at her family’s Thai restaurant. The food was prepared by a kitchen staff of the most adorable older Asian women. The head of the kitchen (and family) is Mae-pa (pronounced may bah) which translates to Mother Aunt. Only when I spoke it, it came out Mother Fish! Laotian is a tonal language, so the same word can have 4 meanings depending on its pronunciation. Lets just say that they all loved it when I had something to say!
In addition to my awesome language skill set, I also learned a lot about Asian cuisine and culture. I can wrap a mean rice roll and make a bowl of phở that would knock your socks off…even though phở is historically a Vietnamese soup.
1 head of cauliflower, roasted
1 large onion
3 cloves garlic
2 cups rehydrated chick peas
4 cups Vegetable Stock (chicken stock can also be used)
2 cups water
1 Tbsp clarified butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
curry paste, I tend to favor red (panang)
Break cauliflower into florets and toss with a bit of olive oil and a sprinkling of salt. Roast for 25 minutes (uncovered) at 450°F. While cauliflower is roasting, in a large soup pot saute onion in clarified butter over med heat for 3-4 minutes, add garlic and continue cooking for an additional 1-2 minutes. Do not allow garlic to burn or it will become bitter. Add the vegetable stock and water to pot, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Once the cauliflower has finished roasting, add it to the soup along with the curry paste; stir to incorporate and simmer for an additional 5 minutes or so. I don’t measure how much curry I use, I know when its right by the color of the soup, usually it is a very large spoonful. My advice to you, add a tablespoon at a time, stir, and then taste, repeat until it is hot enough. Remove soup from heat an allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Using an immersion blender puree soup until creamy. Once desired consistency is achieved, add chick peas, a handful of chopped cilantro and the juice from half a lime. Enjoy!