Sunday Soup

Usually I’m the one checking out cookbooks but a couple of months ago YA asked me to request two for her.   (Don’t ask me why she didn’t request them herself…. I know she has a library card and an online account.)  Both were “Half Baked” titles by Tieghan Gerard – not vegetarian but more veggie recipes than your usual cookbook.

The first one finally showed up last week; both books had a lengthy waiting list.  After YA went through it and marked a few recipes to copy, I figured I should look through it as well.  One of the recipes that caught my eye was the Cauliflower Pale Ale Soup so on Saturday I shopped for the ingredients and yesterday morning, I headed into the kitchen to prepare it.  I had to change it up a bit to make it vegetarian and also because I didn’t have pale ale and didn’t want to buy six bottles/cans.


5 slices of vegetarian bacon, chopped
4 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1 ½ tsp. paprika
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 c. vegetarian broth
1 medium head of cauliflower, chopped (6 cups)
2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
2 tsp. dried thyme
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Salt & pepper
1 12-oz. bottle hard cider
½ c. milk (I used skim)
2 Tbsp. butter
Shredded cheddar cheese

How To

  • Saute the bacon in 1 Tbsp of the olive oil. Move bacon to a separate bowl and toss with the rosemary, ½ tsp. paprika and the pinch of cayenne.
  • Add the remaining 3 Tbsp. of oil to the pan. Saute the onion and celery until soft.
  • Add ½ c. broth, cauliflower, garlic, thyme, 1 tsp. paprika, pinch of red pepper flakes, salt & pepper to taste. Stir for a bit then add the rest of the broth and the cider.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, until cauliflower is tender.
  • Blend the soup (either in blender or using immersion blender).
  • Serve with the veggie bacon bits and cheddar cheese.

It was yummy; YA and I both enjoyed it for lunch.  Between the two of us, there are about 15 recipes we’ve marked with little post-it notes so I’m thinking this might end up being a cookbook we decide to purchase.  Guess I’d better start looking through my current cookbook stash to see which one will have to go!!

Do you often cook with liquor?

34 thoughts on “Sunday Soup”

  1. Aside from the liquor in the cook, I can think of a few recipes that include liquor in one form or another: stews with red wine and with Guinness, shrimp scampi with white wine, fusilli with vodka sauce. There are others where a little wine is used to deglaze a pan but I don’t have them all top of mind.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Yes. Red wine in spaghetti sauce, stews, etc. White in chicken or fish dishes. Dry sherry in some Chinese stir fries or creamy soups like shrimp bisque. Brandy/cognac in steak au poivre.

    But, to answer Bill’s first question, a glass of wine while I cook is the norm.

    Chris in Owatonna

    **BSP** If any of you get lost and find yourself in Winnebago, MN, tonight at 6:30, I’ll be at the Muir Library presenting a program titled “The Ins and Outs of Mystery Writing.” I enjoy doing library presentations, and I’ve refined this one so it’s hopefully even better than ever. At the very least, discussing mysteries and thrillers (and my books) with folks will be fun.
    **End BSP**

    Liked by 4 people

  3. The stollen I make at Christmas has dried fruit soaked in rum, and when it comes out of the oven you slosh German brandy all over it a couple of times as it cools, along with butter and powdered sugar.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Yes, red wine in the chicken cacciatori (Robin’s recipe), white wine or sherry in any number of things… I just made a French Apple Cake (using frozen apples from friends’ harvest last fall) that calls for 3 Tbsp. of rum…

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Just a little red wine in minestrone or Italian tomato sauce. I used to put sake in my spicy tofu stirfry, per the recipe, but it didn’t seem to do much. When my little bottle of sake ran out I never replaced it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You might read that as I’m trying glasses of vinegar. That’s not exactly what I meant… although I do taste them of course, but not by the glassful.

      Liked by 4 people

  6. I drink vicariously these days through my cooking. I use wine to hydrate my mushrooms Bothell one should I pick in the wild in the ones that I buy at the store I use stuff in my cheese fondue what the heck is it kirschwasser which is the cherry brandy I use apple wine, apple brandy skews me in other stuff I use vodka in my tomato sauce, I use tea instead of water a lot of the time between my vegetable stock, substitutes for chicken and beef flavor, my tea, my wine, my Brandys, I get drinking done without any alcohol and BS. When you’re looking to get rid of your cookbooks, give me a holler I don’t have that same rule that you do and I bet I love the cook book you’re aborting

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I recall on beer, cheese soup is that you just heat up the chicken broth for most folks vegetable broth for us veggies and melt the cheese into it. The recipe calls for craft cheese like Velveeta kind of cheese, but you can upgrade to wonderful thing. It was Havarti Gouda, Geuer, and the cheese ends up getting flavored the way you want it flavored by adding a variation on the cheese and the beer that’s gonna establish the taste of the beer cheese soup. The most important ingredient is the popcorn that goes on top. Do you have to have that salted and buttered to sprinkle on top of the beer cheese soup when you’re done but I believe it’s just broth she’s like it’s melted in like you do with a fondue and then when you’re all done you had the beer store it in and eat it while there’s still some effervescence left in there from the beer.

    Liked by 1 person

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