Soup fit for a king (and his mistress)
Cauliflower is inextricably linked with the Comtesse du Barry, a favourite mistress of King Louis XV of France. Interestingly, cauliflower is known as the “faux-potato” in several low-carbohydrate and low-fat diets. This parmesan-flavoured cauliflower soup is a wonderful dish to have to hand during the busy Christmas season when guests are popping in. If you prefer it with more of a kick, use blue cheese instead of parmesan, or stir in a good pinch of garam masala.
To dress it up for pre-Christmas entertaining, strew the top with a few matchsticks of smoked salmon, or with crisped slices of pancetta and toasted almonds.
Or, if you want to be very Comtesse du Barry about it, slip in a couple of seared sea scallops at the last minute, then serve it with a dollop of crème fraîche and a spoonful of caviar.