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Aug 30, 2012

Creamy Roasted Garlic and Cauliflower Soup

Originally from Good Life, this roasted garlic and cauliflower soup was great, despite the fact that it is still summer. We did dress it up with additional vegetables, used apple juice instead of wine, skipped the bacon and, as usual, doubled the spices. Here is the original recipe:

Creamy Roasted Garlic and Cauliflower Soup

serves 4-6


1 whole head cauliflower
1 large whole head garlic
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 stalks celery, diced
1 yellow onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 tablespoon flour
1/3 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup water
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth, plus up to 2 more as needed for desired consistency
1 dried bay leaf
2 teaspoons fresh minced parsley
1/3 cup half and half
3 ounces cooked and crumbled bacon
additional oil for serving - olive oil or truffle oil


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Cut cauliflower into individual florets. Toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Transfer to a foil lined baking sheet. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.

Cut the top off of the head of garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and wrap with foil. Place wrapped garlic on the baking sheet. Roast the cauliflower and garlic at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes. When the cauliflower is tender and golden remove from the oven.

The garlic will need to roast for a total of about 25-30 minutes. You can remove it to check it's progress as needed - it should smell fragrant but not raw, be golden and tender.

Meanwhile, heat the butter in a cast iron dutch oven or medium-large stock pot. Add the onion, celery, and carrot. Saute over medium heat for about 10 minutes. Whisk in the salt, pepper, paprika, thyme, and flour and continue to cook for 2 more minutes.

Add the wine and water, whisking to combine with the flour mixture. Then, slowly add in the 2 cups broth. Add the bay leave and roasted garlic cloves. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower and simmer an additional 5 minutes.

Remove the bay leaf. Working in batches, add the soup to a blender or food processor and blend until pureed and smooth. Add additional broth during or after blending to achieve desired consistency. After all the batches have been completed, return to the pot. Stir in the half and half and parsley. Cook until just heated through. Adjust salt and pepper for tastes.

Serve immediately, topped with bacon and a drizzle of olive or truffle oil and a side of bread for dipping.

The other change to the recipe was using corn starch instead of flour. After much research, Angie has decided to give going gluten free a try. Her Graves disease (autoimmune disorder resulting in attacks on the thyroid) can possibly be resolved or at least reduced by going gluten free. It won't hurt to try, at the very least. That said, there may be a gluten free food blog in our future. 

For now, we will get in the habit of preparing and shooting our more interesting meals and maybe they will be of some help to others.

I took the time to make a time lapse of the soup being put together as well as the still photos. Enjoy, comment and share your great gluten free recipes!

Aug 27, 2012

Poochie in Pastels

Sitting on my pink, green, yellow and white baby blanket, in Muffin's pink, green, yellow and white coat, was our Poochie, barking at the dogs on TV, this past rainy Saturday.

No one and nothing else lets you get away with dramatic lighting and wide angles like a dog.

Aug 24, 2012

Blue Wisps

The silky blooms on these vines were next on my list of what I'd like to grow in our yard. Perhaps on the opposite side of our arbour that the hops are on. For now, I'm just glad the hops are growing so well.

Aug 22, 2012

Monster Cookies

Sorry for missing your weekly dose of deliciousness last week. I've been in the process of preparing data for migration to a new computer that I hope is ordered by the time this post is posted. That said, it may be a bit quiet for a little while until I have everything back to normal operation.

Until then, I hope these cookies from Hot Racks Bakery will keep you satisfied until I can resume the normal routine.

Aug 20, 2012

Saskatoon Forestry Farm and Zoo 2012 - 8

Not usually so easy to see or get a good photo of.

Early arrival times make for serene, empty paths like these. It was entirely peaceful at the zoo until about 10 am. As much as I like to start my visits in the flower gardens when the light is better and the air stiller, I may start the occasional visit in the zoo.

This photo was taken on the same visit as the one above. I decided to take the counterclockwise route which made for trees I'd never noticed before, angles on scenes I don't usually see. This also produced a chicken under a shrub.

As I rounded the corner I saw these two little ones. The instant they saw me they scurried under their mother's plumage. I had to switch lenses and waited patiently for them to come out, but aside from a little head poking up oh so briefly I couldn't get the closeup I'd hoped for. Cute, nonetheless.

Aug 18, 2012

Aug 17, 2012

Saskatoon Forestry Farm and Zoo 2012 - 7

Sorry for the lack of clarity in these nest three. Fences.

Definitely more meat on that bone than the ones we give Kiwi. But watching him chew was just like watching a larger version of our dog chewing.

Aug 15, 2012

Saskatoon Forestry Farm and Zoo 2012 - 6

I thought I had missed the season to most likely witness a peacock show off. I was wrong. Mid-July was the time I got this shot.

Amazing how quickly those tiny little goslings grow up. Nice that the parents are less protective by this point and a person can get a bit closer without being challenged.

Aug 13, 2012

Saskatoon Forestry Farm and Zoo 2012 - 5

You probably saw my synchronized swimming photo from a few weeks ago. It's hard to believe the Olympics are already over. Of course, the Paralympics have just begun. I only saw one race near the start of the games. I tried watching a bit more online but the feeds I watched on the net were either full of commercials, hiccup-y, blocked in Canada by the broadcaster, showing events from hours ago, conducting interviews full of ridiculous questions posed to athletes still catching their breath or not interested in it at the moment, or events overloaded with commentary at unnecessary times. I have nothing against the Olympics, but the broadcasters made it difficult to see what I wanted to see so my interest was pretty low this time around.

To resume the series from this year's visits to the zoo I have a few flowers. These are nothing special beyond getting the framing just right. I have a few more unique that I will share in the next little while. For now, please enjoy these huge peony blooms. I missed the pink ones from slightly earlier in the season. I noticed them as I was leaving one visit that happened to be just before our vacation. They were finished before my next visit.

The roses aren't as nice as most years, likely from the excess rain we have had, but this one was beautiful and only too about fifteen minutes of waiting until the sun moved to just the right spot to cast a ray through the leaves on the best bloom.

Aug 9, 2012

Some Dessert from Hot Racks

Nothing to say but delicious! I love making photos of their products, but the best part is when I know I have the shot it's time to dig in.