Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Brussels Sprouts and Apples

Total Time:
1 hr
20 min
40 min

4 servings

  • 3 cups cauliflower florets (from about 1 small head)
  • 1/2 white onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 sprigs fresh lemon thyme, plus 1 teaspoon leaves for garnish
  • 1 1/2 quarts whole milk
  • Kosher salt
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for frying
  • 6 to 7 Brussels sprouts, leaves separated
  • Fleur de sel
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
  • Cracked black pepper
  • 1 pink lady apple
  • Smoked extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • Place the cauliflower florets in a large pot with the onion, thyme sprigs and milk. Slowly bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Season with kosher salt, cover and simmer until the cauliflower is soft, 25 to 30 minutes. Discard the thyme sprigs. Transfer the cauliflower mixture to a blender and puree until completely smooth. Taste and season with salt.

  • Fill a medium saucepan with 2 to 3 inches of olive oil and heat to 350 degrees F. Fry the Brussels sprout leaves a few at a time until browned, 30 to 40 seconds. Drain on paper towels and season with fleur de sel.

  • To serve, scoop the apple into balls with a Parisian scoop or small melon baller. Or, just dice the apple if a scoop is unavailable. Ladle the soup into shallow bowls or small shot glasses or espresso cups and garnish with the fried Brussels sprout leaves. Sprinkle with the chives, lemon thyme leaves, apple balls and season with fleur de sel and cracked black pepper. Drizzle with the smoked olive oil.

Blending Hot Liquids: When blending hot liquids, remove liquid from the heat and allow to cool for at least 5 minutes. Transfer liquid to a blender or food processor and fill it no more than halfway. If using a blender, release one corner of the lid; that prevents the vacuum effect that creates heat explosions. Place a towel over the top of the machine, pulse a few times, then process on high speed until smooth.

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