This is a beautiful bowl of soup showcasing winter’s white vegetables with lovely piquant tang with the addition of blue cheese.

 serves 6

2 bay leaves

3 sprigs of sage leaves

3 sprigs of thyme leaves

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil 

2 leeks, green tops removed, white section quartered length ways then finely sliced 

400g potato (sebago, yukon gold or nicola) cut into small cubes

1.2kg cauliflower head, roughly cut into small chunks

500ml vegetable or chicken stock

500ml milk

sea salt

ground black pepper

120g firm blue cheese, coarsely grated 

Using kitchen string tie the bay leaves and herb sprigs into a bundle. 

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat.  Add the leek and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until softened.   Add the potato and cauliflower and stir to combine.  Add the herb bundle, stock and milk.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes or until the vegetables are very tender.  Remove from heat.

Remove the herb bundle.  Using a hand held blender, puree soup until smooth.  Stir in the cheese until melted. Season to taste with salt and ground pepper.  

Ladle soup into warmed bowls. Serve with grilled sour dough bread. 

Tip: Dirt tends to lodge in between the tight leaf folds of the leek. Leave the base of the leek in tact when cutting the white section into quarters lengthways.  Holding onto the base, rinse under cold running water to rid any dirt and shake off excess water, before finely slicing. 

Fiona Hammond © June 2019

Mark Brancatisano