- 1 large head cauliflower (2 – 2 1/2 lb), cored and chopped into small, bite size pieces
- 3 to 4 large cloves of garlic, whole & skin removed
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp butter
- 1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
- 3 1/2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 3 cups milk
- 14 oz low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tsp dried parsley or 1 Tbsp chopped fresh
- 1/4 tsp (slightly heaping) dried thyme or 1 tsp chopped fresh
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 oz shredded sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded (1 cup)
- 1 oz finely grated parmesan cheese (slightly packed 1/4 cup)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place cauliflower and whole cloves of garlic on baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and toss to evenly coat, then spread into an even layer and season lightly with salt and pepper. Bake in preheated oven until golden, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
- In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add in onion and saute until tender, about 4 – 5 minutes. Add in flour and cook, stirring constantly for about 1 1/2 minutes. While whisking, slowly pour in milk followed by vegetable broth and cream. Add in parsley, thyme, bay leaf, half of the roasted cauliflower, and all the garlic. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, then reduce heat to low. Puree the soup in a blender (being careful as your working with hot liquids) or use an immersion hand blender to puree soup in the pot. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the other half of the roasted cauliflower. Remove from heat and stir in sharp white cheddar and parmesan cheese. Serve warm garnished with fresh bread or croutons if desired.
* To cut down on fat and dairy, I added 1 cup of peeled, cooked diced red potato to the soup instead of the 1/2 cup heavy cream. When you puree the soup the potato adds a creamy consistency and helps to thicken the soup. I also used unsweetened almond milk for the 3 cups of milk.