To make sure the leek is free of dirt, cut it in half lengthwise and rinse well before chopping.
Puréeing Under Pressure:
Standing blenders can allow you to purée soups to a smooth and silky consistency. Just be aware that whenever you process hot liquids in a blender, the pressure from the steam can blow the cover off, causing the hot liquid to splatter both you and your kitchen. To guard against accidents, never fill a blender more than half full with a hot liquid. If the machine has a feeder cap, crack it open slightly to allow the steam to escape. Start blending the mixture at the lowest speed, and gradually increase to higher speeds as needed to achieve the desired consistency. As an extra precaution, cover the blender lid with a towel to protect yourself in the event that the top pops off.
Total Timeunder 30 minutes
Make Ahead RecipeYes
Recipe Courseappetizer, main course
Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegetarian
Taste and Texturecheesy, creamy, savory
Type of Dishhot soup, soup
- 3 tablespoons reduced-fat margarine or light butter
- ½ cup chopped onion or leek (white and light green portions only)(see Notes)
- 1½ teaspoons crushed fresh garlic
- 4 cups fresh or frozen cauliflower florets
- 2½ cups water
- 1½ teaspoons chicken or vegetable bouillon granules
- ½ teaspoon dried marjoram
- ½ teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 cup evaporated nonfat or low-fat milk
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
For Easy-to-Chew and Soft Diets:
Place the margarine or butter in a 3-quart pot and melt over medium heat. Add the onion or leek, cover, and cook for several minutes, or until the vegetable starts to soften. Add the garlic and cook for 30 additional seconds.
Add the cauliflower, water, bouillon granules, marjoram, and pepper to the pot. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are soft.
Stir the evaporated milk into the soup. Purée the soup with a hand-held blender until smooth.
Add the cheese to the pot and, stirring constantly, cook over medium heat for a minute or 2, or just until the cheese has melted. Serve hot.
For Smooth/Puréed Diets:
Working in batches, purée the entire pot of soup in a standing blender until smooth (see Notes).
2010 Sandra Woodruff and Leah Gibert-Henderson