A cup of cauliflower rings in at less than 30 calories and offers lots of vitamin C and a fair amount of iron.
By JILL WENDHOLT SILVA
The Kansas City Star
But if you don’t like the strange, squeaky texture of the florets, chances are you avoid it whenever you see it on a crudite tray.
To take cauliflower to the next dimension, try roasting it for a slightly nutty flavor. Add the florets to The Star’s Roasted Cauliflower Soup With Herbed Croutons and you can satisfy a craving for a smooth, cream-style soup without all the fat.
• Shopping tip: The 1/3-less-fat than cream cheese garden vegetable flavor used for testing was by The Laughing Cow.
Use either unsalted chicken stock or vegetable stock in this soup. Often, chicken stock is lighter in color than vegetable stock, but the color varies by brand.
Roasted Cauliflower Soup With Herbed Croutons
Makes 6 (1-cup) servings
1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into bite-size florets (about 6 cups florets)
4 1/2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups unsalted chicken or vegetable stock
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
2 (3/4-ounce each) wedges 1/3-less-fat garden vegetable cream cheese spread
1 cup skim or 1 percent milk
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup small, crusty French bread cubes (cut into 1/4-inch cubes)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a 10- by 15-inch jelly roll pan with aluminum foil.
Place cauliflower florets in a resealable plastic bag. Drizzle with 3 teaspoons olive oil, salt and pepper. Shake to coat evenly. Spread cauliflower in a single layer on prepared sheet. Bake uncovered 30 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring midway through cooking.
Heat remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently, until onion is tender. Add roasted cauliflower and stock. Cook uncovered 10 to 15 minutes or until vegetables are very tender. Stir in Parmesan cheese and cream cheese spread and allow to melt. Remove from heat. Using an immersion blender, puree until smooth (or, working in batches as necessary, allow vegetables to cool slightly, ladle into a blender, vent cover and puree, then return to sauce pan). Stir in milk. Return to low heat and cook, stirring frequently, 3 to 5 minutes or until heated through.
Spray a small skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Add bread cubes, and spray bread with cooking spray. Sprinkle with garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Cook uncovered, stirring frequently over medium heat, just until bread cubes are golden. Stir in parsley.
To serve, ladle soup into bowls. Top each serving with Herbed Croutons.
Per serving for soup: 113 calories (39 percent from fat), 6 grams total fat (2 grams saturated), 7 milligrams cholesterol, 10 grams carbohydrates, 11 grams protein, 177 milligrams sodium, 3 grams dietary fiber.
Per serving for coutons, based on 6: 21 calories (13 percent from fat), trace total fat (no saturated fat), no cholesterol, 4 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram protein, 44 milligrams sodium, trace dietary fiber.
Recipe developed for The Star by professional home economists Kathryn Moore and Roxanne Wyss.