CAULIFLOWER SOUP WITH HAZELNUT AND SAGE BUTTER

This soup on it's own is extremely easy to make and takes not much time at all! I added something a little extra in the way of a hazelnut and sage butter. I was also lucky enough to have some truffle butter, which added a rich earthy flavour, although normal butter is perfectly acceptable. Along with the hazelnut and sage butter, I dressed some left over cauliflower florets in olive oil and sea salt and roasted in a hot oven for 10 or so minutes until just cooked through and golden. I used these to top the soup, along with the hazelnut and sage butter and some shavings of fresh truffle. Walnuts or almonds would be equally as delicious in replace of the hazelnuts too. 

SERVES 4

Butter

Olive oil

1 large leek, white part only, roughly chopped

3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

750g cauliflower, cut into florets

Sea salt

100g double or thickened cream

HAZELNUT SAGE BUTTER

50g (truffle) butter

50g hazelnuts, roughy chopped

10 or so sage leaves

1. In a large, heavy-based pot, heat a knob of butter and lug of oil. Add the leek and garlic and cook until softened (5-7 minutes). 

2. Add the cauliflower florets and pour over boiling water to barely just cover the cauliflower. Some prefer to use stock, however I think it overpowers the soup too much so I just use the water and season with sea salt to taste. 

3. Cook over a medium heat until cauliflower is softened and liquid has reduced a little (20-30 minutes). Blitz in a food processor or with a hand blender until smooth. Add the cream and stir through. If the soup is too thick, add a little extra cream. If too thin, return to heat and reduce until soup is desired consistency. 

4. Just before serving, prepare the hazelnut and sage butter. Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and heat over a low heat until butter is foaming and sage begins to turn crispy. 

5. Serve soup in bowls, topped with the hazelnut sage butter and if using, the extra roasted cauliflower and shavings of fresh truffle. 

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