The snow keeps falling in steady flurries as I am casually eating my soup at the dining room table. We’ve had almost four seasons in one day, which does not surprise anyone living in New England. I look at the clock staring in my direction to realize that it is not even noon, but I am already starving. This always happens when I get up early, despite the substantial breakfast I have every morning. I am craving lunch and welcome a few tartines with a bowl of warm homemade vegetable soup.
Mine is made of a head of yellow broccoflower cooked with lemongrass, ginger, garlic, parsnip, a potato and fresh herbs. The dish is easy to make, nothing fancy but rather the type of food you toss together quickly to use leftover vegetables when you decide to clean the fridge. The broccoflower is initially intended for another cooking project, but I do not have the time to get to it; making a soup becomes a great choice. I decide to make a few tartines to go with it: a few slices of my favorite bread topped with goat cheese — Coeur du Berry — thin pieces of Alaskan smoked salmon, steamed peels of zucchini and thin slices of pink radish. A few leaves of fresh Thai basil and gomasio complete my quick-to-make tartines.
You can find two types of broccoflower: orange-yellow or lime green. As suggested by its interesting name, this vegetable is a cross between broccoli and cauliflower, with a taste close to both. I particularly like broccoflower because of its eye-catching color, and have enjoyed preparing it a lot this winter. When it is steamed, I eat it topped with fresh herbs, a dash of fleur de sel and olive oil — a really healthy snack — or I also like to combine it with other greens in a stir-fry, to accompany a simple bowl of whole grain rice. Simple and delicious.
In a soup, it tastes equally satisfying. It reveals creaminess under a subtle taste of the combined vegetables and spices I add, with a warming yellow color to cheer anyone up. When I look inside my bowl from which steam escapes in curving lines, I get lost in my thoughts and dream that I am actually catching a glimpse of Spring lurking at the corner, as it is ready to come out.
“What is in the soup?” P. asks me when I pack a tupperware full for him to have for lunch.
“Let me know what you think later once you’ve tried it.”
Like me, he likes the addition of lemongrass. I have a stick in the fridge, along with a bunch of Thai basil and ginger left from an Asian shrimp coconut soup made a few days before: together, they give a somewhat Asian flavor to the dish, which seduce us both.
The large pot I prepare is enough for our lunch, and leaves me with plenty for another meal too. Isn’t this one of the joys about preparing soup? Make it in big quantity to eat over the course of the week when life is simply too busy; it keeps you warm and cozy inside during the coldest spells of winter.
The soup tastes even better reheated the next day.
With a few tartines.
And of course, a different topping each time.
- 1 broccoflower head (yellow), washed and cut in pieces
- 1 large potato, peeled and diced
- 1 parsnip, peeled and diced
- 1 stick lemongrass, cut in small pieces
- 2 Tbsp Thai basil
- 1 Tbsp coriander, chopped
- 1 tsp grated fresh ginger root
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 shallot (or 2 spring onions)
- 4 cups of homemade vegetable broth (or water)
- 2 Tbsp canola oil
- Salt and pepper
- Crème fraîche to serve (optional)
- 1 zucchini (for the peels, optional)
- Cut and discard the outer part of the lemongrass, and slice the stick.
- Take a large cocotte and heat 2 Tbsp oil.
- Add the ginger, lemongrass, garlic and shallot and cook for 1 to 2 min on low heat until fragrant.
- Add the vegetables and cook for 5 min.
- Add the stock (or water) and the coriander. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 20 min. Then add half of the basil and let rest for 2 min before mixing the soup in a blender.
- Serve with the rest of the basil, zucchini strips steamed for 2 min, and a dollop of crème fraîche. Accompany with your favorite tartines.
- 1 tête de brocofleur jaune, lavée et coupée en gros cubes
- 1 grosse pomme de terre, peleée et coupée en gros cubes
- 1 panais, pelé et coupé en gros cubes
- 1 bâton de citronnelle, coupé en rondelles fines
- 2 càs de basilic Thai
- 1 càs de coriandre, hachée
- 1 càc de racine de gingembre râpée
- 2 gousses d’ail
- 1 échalote (ou 2 oignons tiges)
- 1 litre de bouillon de légumes maison (ou eau)
- 2 càs d’huile végétale
- Sel et poivre
- Crème fraîche pour servir (facultatif)
- 1 courgette (coupée en lanières, facultatif)
- Enlevez l’enveloppe la plus dure de la citronnelle et coupez le reste en rondelles.
- Prenez une grosse cocotte et chauffez 2 càs d’huile.
- Ajoutez le gingembre, la citronnelle, l’ail et l’échalote et faites revenir pendant 1 à 2 min sur feux doux pour que les arômes se développent.
- Ajoutez tous les légumes et faites-les suer pendant 5 min.
- Ajoutez le bouillon (ou l’eau) et la coriandre. Assaisonnez de sel et de poivre. Couvrez et faites mijoter pendant environ 20 min, jusqu’à ce que les légumes soient tendres. Arrêtez le feu et ajoutez la moitié du basilic. Apres 2 min, mixez votre soupe.
- Servez-la chaude avec le reste du basilic, des lanières de courgette cuites à la vapeur pendant 2 min et de la crème fraîche. Accompagnez de tartines préférées.
justement je me mettais a preparer une soupe… inspiration, inspiration ! je vais “combiner” qq chose avec tes idees et les miennes ! Merci !
This looks beautiful. I’ve always been intrigued by yellow broccoflower when I see it at the grocery store, but never have cooked with it. I can’t wait to try this soup.
So beautiful! That soup looks very refined and tasty!
your photography is absolutely stunning. I want to move to that house behind the trees. you create such an ambiance… and yes, the soup looks great!
This is just good simple cooking but you then take this fantastic photos and elevate it several stars! Of course it keeps me coming back for more.
Sounds delicious and I’ m going to try it today!
we have all the frigid temps in NYC, but none of the beautiful snow.
I love cauliflower soup, and I love broccoli soup, so I’m not sure why broccoflower never occured to me. Those flavors sound lovely; I just used a stick of fresh lemongrass in some braised scallops I did the other day, and it’s my new favorite thing.
As usual, your pictures warm my soul.
you make dreary winter so bright and cheery!
Although I post a comment for the first time, I have been observing your site for a little while now. I must admit I admire your potos. They are very very adorable. I wish I could make such photos. The broccoli soup seems interesting and worth testing in my own kitchen.
The color is so beautiful.
Beautiful post as usual, great work 🙂
Did you get my e-mail by any chance?
Judging by your photos, I have to believe that spring is well on its way.
Oooh, the broccoflower gives the soup such a beautiful color. I don’t see it too often in the Rhode Island markets; I’ll have to look for it in Boston.
This so makes me want to cook and I just finished dinner. Thank-you for your lovely photos and reciepes. I will be cooking this.
Bea, your beautiful photos definitely make me miss New England! Keep up the great work!
so gorgeous photo~
When i saw thefirst pic iwas thinking my brocoli soup doesn’t look yellow and was really curious to know the ingridients, but then i saw they were yellow brocoli.
Ths soup looks so delicious
Quelquefois, j’aimerais bien avoir le temps de m’asseoir, et de me preparer de jolies choses comme ca, pour moi toute seule. Et puis de les deguster en regardant la neige tomber.
C’est pour ca que j’aime tellement ton blog.
Rien de tel qu’une bonne soupe et c’est tellement bon….Bonne soirée..sous la chaleur …
I’ve seen so much broccoflower around the internet lately, but this recipe was the last straw—I’ll have to get over to the store and buy some to make this soup! Thank you.
Je viens de manger du brocolis… Ca ne m’empêcherais pas de goûter à ce brocofleur, que je n’ai même jamais vu en magasin !
Brocofleur, panais, basilic thaï, … je n’en ai pas chez moi, malheureusement !
La luminosite de tes photos est superbe! Tu me donne faim! AUjourd’hui c’est un temps a soupe!
your photos are absolutely beautiful!
you’ve been tagged! 🙂
Many thanks everyone!
I just have to ask, what is a tartaine?
I love your blog. It’s my kind of pornography!
Pingback: cucina nicolina » Blog Archive » Broccoli Soup and the Met
I am always mesmerized by your photos!!!!
I love food photography and the way you take it i think its ultimate…
What is the type of camera you use?
Your food too is soooooo yummy looking ,that i always feel like trying it .but due to lack of all the ingredients in India it not always possible
Thanks for your lovely blog and being such an inspiration!!!!!!!!!!.
Pingback: Up North (highlights) « Kati en Bici
Late to the table.
Poor woman’s broccoflower soup, and tartines
green broccoflower, rather small and pale
2/3 cup frozen peas
4 nugget sized white potatoes
one small carrot
1/2 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
pinch dried basil
pinch dried turkey stuffing herb mix (?)
1/2 tsp curry powder
Saute in olive oil, then simmer in chicken broth.
When cooked blend most, leaving some chunky
Add in 1/2 cup evaporated milk.
No resemblance at all! But it’s very good.
Thanks for your recipes which I’m bookmarking.
Oh. I forgot: garnish with jullienned green onion, squirt of lime juice.
Tartines: small rounds of leftover levain country rye, toasted, with mashed tinned sardines, more lime juice, and julienned red pepper.