Cauliflower Soup with Hazelnuts and Bacon

INGREDIENTS
  • ½ cup blanched hazelnuts
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into small florets
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon (about 4 ounces)
  • 1 small fennel bulb, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup dry white wine or water
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 2 bay leaves


DIRECTIONS
Step 1
Preheat oven to 350°. Toast hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, 10–12 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.
Step 2
While the nuts are cooling, increase oven to 400°. Toss cauliflower and 2 Tbsp. oil on another baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing once, until florets are browned all over and tender, 30–35 minutes.
Step 3
Meanwhile, cut bacon crosswise into ½" pieces. Heat a heavy pot over medium and cook bacon, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, 10–12 minutes. Transfer to paper towels.
Step 4
Cook fennel, onion, and garlic in drippings in pot, stirring occasionally, until onion and fennel are very soft, 8–10 minutes. Add wine and cook until mostly evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add roasted cauliflower, broth, cream, and bay leaves; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until cauliflower is very tender, 20–25 minutes. Pluck out bay leaves; discard. Let mixture cool slightly.
Step 5
Working in batches, purée cauliflower mixture until very smooth. Strain back into pot; season with salt and pepper.
Step 6
Just before serving, ladle soup into bowls; top with bacon and nuts and drizzle with oil.
Step 7
Do Ahead: Soup can be made 3 days ahead. Let cool; cover and chill soup and bacon separately.
Made on
Tilda