It’s not even October yet and my friends were already expressing pumpkin spice fatigue yesterday. I have just the antidote: ginger, turmeric, cumin, coriander, fennel, some lime juice, and a chile. Who’s in?
I have only one cauliflower soup recipe on this site — I shared it over 10 years ago. It’s so good and so simple, no updates have been warranted. But flipping my way through Madhur Jaffrey’s Vegetarian India for ways to sate my steadfast Indian cravings, I knew this would be the next addition to the category. A close cousin to these potatoes and cauliflower (aloo gobi) but formatted as a soup, this is my favorite kind, one that doesn’t expect you to have a quart of homemade or boxed stock at the ready, the kind that trusts it is intensely seasoned enough that just water will stretch the flavors into a full soup. More of these, please. (Here’s another, by the way.)
As for meal strategies, well, this is so typical of me and almost exactly how I roll (except rolling would imply some kind of master plan, and nope, not that either) but I decided I was going to make two things for dinner yesterday, this soup and another even more fall-ish roasted vegetable dish with Indian spices. I made the soup first because it reheats the best and then I didn’t want to cook anymore because why cook two or more things when you can cook one? In the Tomato Rasam Soup in the same chapter, Jaffrey mentions that she likes occasionally likes to serve it with a dollop of plain rice in the center and this was my “a-ha!” moment. A swirl of plain basmati rice, a few toasted wedges of naan and a totally optional swirl of yogurt or cream — plus some cucumber spears on the side, somewhat in the spiced style in the book because I couldn’t resist — and suddenly our soup starter was more of a stew and this is pretty much what counts for dinner around here. A really, really good one.
Thank you: I hadn’t in the least expected such a warm outpouring on my last post. It means everything. I’m carefully reading my way through all of the comments and responding to questions. I love all of your stories.
This Friday afternoon, 9/30: To celebrate 10 years and for a long-overdue catch-up, I want to hang out on Snapchat (@smittenkitchen) and have a Q&A. Snap me all your questions you have and I’ll do my best to answer them before my kids find me and demand food/attention. I am so sorry to have to do this, but I am under the weather and need to reschedule in a couple weeks, will announce soon. :(
Next Tuesday, 10/4, 6:30 pm: As part of the Food Book Fair, I’ll be chatting with Molly Yeh (My Name Is Yeh) about her first cookbook, Molly On The Range at the new West Elm in Dumbo. [This is a ticketed event. Details here.]
Every week: Every Monday morning, just when most of us are groaning our way back into the weekday grind, I send out a newsletter full of seasonal meal ideas and archive favorites, plus links from around the web and a round-up of anything you might have missed that week. I would never, ever torment us with one of those pop-up sign-up forms — I keep it instead in the sidebar (on desktop; bottom of the page on tablet and mobile) and everything and anything you’d need to know is on this page. Sounds good? See you next Monday!
One year ago: The Perfect Manhattan
Two years ago: Latke Waffles
Three years ago: Frico Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Four years ago: Crackly Banana Bread
Five years ago: Apple and Honey Challah
Six years ago: Beef Chili with Sour Cream and Cheddar Biscuits
Seven years ago: Date Spice Loaf
Eight years ago: Black and White Cookies and Summer’s Last Hurrah Panzanella
Nine years ago: Spaghetti with Chorizo and Almonds
Ten! years ago: Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake
And for the other side of the world:
Six Months Ago: Eggs in Purgatory, Puttanesca-Style
1.5 Years Ago: Baked Chickpeas with Pita Chips and Yogurt
2.5 Years Ago: Whole-Grain Cinnamon Swirl Bread
3.5 Years Ago: Spinach and Smashed Egg Toast
4.5 Years Ago: Raspberry Coconut Macaroons
Spiced Cauliflower Soup
Don’t miss the final squeeze of lime juice — it’s everything here.
Without a swirl of cream or dollop of yogurt (both optional and neither have any significant impact), this soup is vegan.
My sole regret is not doubling this. As in, I’ve already gone back to the market this morning for more potatoes and cauliflower so I can make more later. Don’t let this happen to you.
Update, 3/15/18: I’m so thrilled everyone has been enjoying this soup overall. I’d say the most consistent concern that’s been raised in the comments is that some find the soup a little watery. Thus, I’m adding an adjustment in the recipe to begin with 3 cups of water (instead of 4), and then you can add the last one as needed. Hope that helps in the future.
- 2 tablespoons olive or peanut oil
- 1/2 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
- 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium potato (about 6 ounces), peeled and chopped
- 2 teaspoons peeled and chopped fresh ginger
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 fresh hot green chili, chopped (more or less to taste)
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon red chili powder or cayenne (to taste)
- About 3 1/2 cups cauliflower florets (from about 1/2 a large 2.75-pound head)
- 2 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped or 1 1/2 cups canned chopped tomatoes
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, or to taste (we wanted more)
- A couple spoonfuls heavy cream or dollops of yogurt
- 1/2 cup cooked basmati or other long-grain white rice
- Handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Lime wedges
- Toasted pita or naan wedges
To finish (all optional)
Turn the heat to medium low and add the ground coriander, cumin, turmeric and red pepper. Stir for 1 minute. Add the cauliflower, tomatoes and salt and stir for 1 minute. Add [water level reduced from original 4 cups, see Note up top] 3 cups water, stir, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover, lower the heat again, and simmer gently for 25 minutes. If the soup seems a little thick, add up to 1 cup more water, as needed.
Let the soup cool slightly, then blend it to your desired texture. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Ladle into bowls and add a dollop of yogurt or tiny swirl (about 1/2 teaspoon) heavy cream, if desired. Squeeze lime juice over, add a few grinds of black pepper and place 2 tablespoons cooked rice to the center of each bowl. Scatter with cilantro and serve with pita wedges on the side, if desired. Dig in.
308 comments on spiced cauliflower soup
Great alternative to butternut squash soup (and I love any excuse to eat indian spices). YUM!
Any time you say you regret not doubling a recipe, I know it’s a recipe I’ll love!
OH MY GOODNESS!! Could that adorable little munchkin mouth get any wider for a spoonful of soup??!!
Recipe looks great, but that wittle mouth! Gah!
How did you know I bought cauliflower today? Thanks for the mind-reading!
I am allergic to tomatoes but would love to make this soup. Do you have any recommendations for a tomato substitute?
Try some tamarind juice or concentrate. You can get a paste in Indian stores. Start with half a teaspoon. It should add the required sourness.
Darrian – pumpkin!
How about tomatillos as a tomato substitute?
The recipe says to blend to desired consistency… your soup looks fairly chunky. How much did you blend it? Did you take out a few scoops and puree? Or put it all in the blender and just pulse a bit? Thanks!
Oh yes please! Yum! I need to make this tomorrow, it just looks and sounds SO good!
I have all the ingredients except a fresh hot green chili. Any suggestion for substitute?
Extra cayenne :)
I used some jarred green salsa and it turned out great.
How spicy is this as you made it? My husband is a bit spice averse, but I really want to make this!
Your Snapchat thing this Friday should say 9/30 instead of 10/30. :)
Yikes, thanks. Now fixed!
your snapchat sesh is on 9/30! (up there you’ve put 10/30) I just want to make sure not to miss :)
This is the recipe I’ve been thinking of, but I want to add lentils! Thank u Deb!
I love you! I have a cauliflower and a potato and a budding vegetarian at home. We are having this for dinner tonight! xox
The cucumbers look amazing. Bonus recipe?
Tragically, your newsletter is saying that you have had too many signup requests and won’t let me add myself! Will you let us know when sign-ups are open again?
Sorry you’re having this problem! Do you want to email me and we can troubleshoot? email@example.com
that also happened to me – the too many sign ups message, but I tried it again and it went through.
Can we use ground cumin instead of cumin seeds? What would you recommend for measurements?
I’m so happy you’ve been around for 10 years! I’ve been a devoted reader since 2008 when I started living on my own at college. Your recipes and book have provided much needed cooking sanity throughout college, moving cross country, moving up and down the East Coast, moving in with my boyfriend (no one told me how much moving there is in your 20s!), and stressful days at work. Thank you for your wonderful blog!
btw. This Friday is 9/30, not 10/30!
Coincidentally, I came home from the market yesterday with the largest cauliflower ever, some baby potatoes, and all the listed spices (for vegetable pickling this weekend. This is definitely on my weekend cook list, with perhaps some harissa subbed in for the chili. I may even attempt it in my Instant Pot electric pressure cooker for 5 minutes of cook time. Btw, have you hopped on that train yet? I’m loving all of the applications of this 7 in 1 cooker: Rice, beans, steel cut oats, and fresh Greek yogurt being my faves. Sorry but I digress…
Onto the question…. what’s on those cucumber spears? I need them in my life!
I added about 2 cups of lentils to a double batch for extra protein and it turned out great! Didn’t need to puree since they added so much body. Coconut cream is a great vegan sub if you have it on hand.
Wrong place on previous comment, I made this in my instant pot! 5 minutes was enough for the cauliflower and potato, but with the lentils, I needed an extra 5 minutes, probably because of the acid from the tomatoes.
Would this work in a pressure cooker? I’m a recent convert to the Instant Pot bandwagon and always looking for things I can make in almost no time.
Me too, Gabs. I’m thinking of attempting it there too… although a 25 minutes soup that fills the kitchen with wonderful Indian scents isn’t a bad thing either…
Thank you for this idea to make cauliflower taste different.
Thoughts about substituting a parsnip for the potato? I”m so excited to make this.
Go for it!
This is quite similar to the Cauliflower Curry in Anna Thomas’ Vegetarian Epicure Book 2, which we’ve been making regularly since 1978. Delish! I know where my next cauliflower is going to end up.
Wait, Anna lets you feed her from a spoon instead of trying to take it from you? I’m a little jealous. Also, is that a small thermos? Do you mind sharing what brand it is and if you like it?
I know exactly what you mean about recipes that require a quart and a half of stock. I never keep it on hand and it always stalls my dinner prep. So thanks for this!
Or I have been super-awesome and made and froze some off but it’s frozen and I know it will defrost fairly fast but it’s still 15 minutes of extra work.
I’ve never even considered freezing stock. That would be so much easier than running it to buy some everytime I need it lol.
Giseller – this is two years later, so don’t know if you’ll see it, BUT – freeze broth/stock (I make it at home all the time to avoid sodium) in ICE CUBE TRAYS! Once they’re frozen, transfer to zip lock bags. THAT way, you can select amounts much more flexibly. If I need a tablespoon or so for a recipe – got it. Just want a mug of soup, not a whole bowl – got it. I SHOULD measure exactly what amount is fitting in the trays, but I don’t. If you find you need exact amounts, measure before you freeze (one or two tablespoons usually will fit in one spot in the tray). Soooo very convenient!
I like to make stock and then reduce it over the course of a day. If I reduce it 4x, it takes up way less space in my freezer and then I just add water when I use it.
I use Better Than Bullion. It’s a tiny little jar of concentrate that makes, like, 32 quarts of stock.
I need to look into that for sure! Thanks for the rec ☺
I love Madhur Jaffrey and have several of her cookbooks….which have tended to sit on the bookshelf as I pick up more recipes online. Thanks for this and for the reminder to look at her books again. We do soup for dinner every Tuesday in winter. Actually, many of our French friends have soup every night for supper (souper in French–having soup), which is probably why they weigh less than we do. Indian cauliflower soup is great!
Sounds delish! If using canned tomatoes (I hate chopping fresh, so messy!), should I drain them or plop them in with their juices? Thank you!
I don’t have any cauliflower at the moment. Could I sub riced cauliflower without ruining it?
I use the Paprika app to store recipes but for some reason can’t download any from your site which makes me so sad! I’m a long-time follower :) Could you possibly investigate? And this soup is SO happening this week!
I’m sorry, it’s been a problem since they redesign. They’re actively — as in, today — trying to figure out why the site no longer integrates. It’s a few other apps too, unfortunately.
Thanks, you’re the best!
Doh! Sorry that was off-topic! Will not do it again, promise!
This looks divine! I am of Indian origin, however I’ve never even made a cauliflower soup. You are in good hands with Madhur Jaffrey, her recipes are gold! Very nice job!!! :-)
Oh my goodness this looks delicious! Must try ASAP!
Did you know she’s written an autobiography? It’s fascinating; probably not as good as a one-on-one over tea, but definitely recommended.
Do you think this could be adapted for the slowcooker? (Seems like it?)
I just bought cauliflower at the farmers market and had been craving Indian! Perfect timing! Thanks for a great 10 years!
What kind of green chili did you use? It looks like a jalapeno in the photo. I bought a Serrano chili, but am afraid it will be too spicy. I don’t mind spice, but wanted to check before making the soup (which I’m so excited to try!). Thanks!
The site is working with the PAPRIKA app for me now. Many thanks
Where did you get your spice jars? They look wide enough to dip measuring spoons into, is this true?
Hi Guys! I made this tonight. It was very good- perhaps lacking a little something.. I think I might add some coconut milk and up the spices (I love lots of spices though so if you prefer lighter spiced meals, ignore that). I also put a bit less water- four cups seemed like a lot, though I also had about 3/4 of a cup less cauliflower than that finely chopped. I mixed with mortar and pestle after cooking and then cooked for a little longer.
I made the following naan recipe with it, which was super fast and turned out very fluffy and delicious (I added 2 cloves of minced garlic):
By the way, Deb, congrats on ten years! I thought that sounded impossibly long until I realized I myself have been following you since my freshman year of college in 2009. Good work!
We also made it this eve and thought it was lacking something. A depth of flavour maybe? I like the idea for coconut milk and may try it with some stock next time too
The key when you make Indian food is to properly meld the ingredients through stirring. This dish requires an aggressive stir to imbue flavor into the cauliflower- more aggressive than seems appropriate. Also, make sure your spices are fresh
We make this on the regular in normal circumstances and it has upped its frequency on the meal plan since we’ve been social distancing. We like it with Naan, and I use frozen riced cauliflower to up the pantry ingredients (and also decrease the prep time for normally time-crunched weeknights).
Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh. Who’s in? Me. I’m in.
Want creaminess and to keep it vegan? Think about swirling in a purée of cashews (with a tad of water in the blender) or some coconut milk.
Yes! I used some extra creamy coconut milk as well. Blends in perfectly.
When is your next book coming out?
sounds delicious :) need to try it
LA KATY FOX
Can’t wait to try this! Also, where did you get those adorable spice jars???
Can you please give more guidance on how to blend to desired texture?
I’ve got pumpkin fatigue — and I haven’t made anything pumpkin yet… Your soup however, is exactly what my family loves for dinner! I want to make this one!
wow love the presentation!! beautiful dish
Don’t peel and chop the tomatoes. Cut them in halves and grate on a coarse grater. You will be left with the empty skin.
Ooooh, I have a giant head of cauliflower and now I know what it is going to be. Thursday night dinner!! Think I could make this in a pressure cooker (aka Instant Pot?) I think I only need tomatoes and potatoes and already have the rest at home!
I am always exasperated by recipes that call for chiles. What kind of chile?
Oh, this is exactly what my poor starved-of-decent-Indian-veggie belly needs right now. (As opposed, for example, to the recipe being handed out in my local supermarket yesterday for “Coconut-Curry Cauliflower Mash”, the ingredients for which were: Curry powder, Cauliflower, Old Ginger, and Coconut milk; basically you stuck everything in a saucepan then when it was soft and gloopy, bunged it in a food processor – to *mash* it of course… And the best part? It was feted as “Best of USA”)
It’s finally less than hot as hell in Texas, which means it’s perfect soup weather. Can’t wait to make this! The head of cauliflower that’s been sitting in my kitchen for a week has a purpose!
If I didn’t care whether this was vegan or not could I substitute chicken stock for the water?
I’m so in. Thank you for reminding me of that gem of a book that I haven’t looked through in way too long. This looks fantastic.
This looks tasty!
Just as an aside… on quick moving recipes like this one it would be great to see a photo of your mise en place. I can never seem to get it just right.
I love your site and ALWAYS enjoy your writing style.
This sounds like my idea of heaven! Cannot wait to make it this weekend!
Read this recipe today and had it for Dinner. We loved it! The spices and everything…. mmmmmhhh… :-)
I used two handfuls of cherry tomatoes and didn’t bother peeling them.
This is going to become a dinner favorite.
Oh and as for the blender thing: I took 2 or 3 ladles of the soup (tomatoes cauliflower and everything) and pureed it with a stick blender (english word? ) then stirred it back into the pot.
I made this last night. I didn’t have the whole seed spices, so I just upped the ground spices. It was tasty, but also lacking a little something (perhaps the whole spices?). Next time I would use less water (4 cups made it too thin for my taste!) and I like Danielle’s idea of adding coconut milk.
I did serve with rice, cilantro, lime, and sour cream (mmm). I also sauteed chard and garlic on the side, and toward the end of my bowl, I dumped in the remaining chard. It was great! You could definitely add some chard or spinach to this soup at the end of the cook time for some added greens.
Thanks Deb, for this recipe and 10 years of blogging! I think I’ve not missed a post since 2010 or perhaps earlier. I love the site for inspiration and your unique voice, and I have found some favorite recipes here that are on our regular rotation. Your chard/lentil/sausage soup is my #1 for winter ski trips! SK is my go-to for desserts, dinner inspiration, what to do with my garden veggies (zucchini fritters!) and the occasional elaborate prep dish (spare ribs from the book, homemade cinnamon rolls, layer cakes). I didn’t mean this post to be so long, but I am realizing as I write that I think this blog made me into a foodie and I so appreciate it!
PS – I also used an immersion blender and just did some random blending in the pot in order to keep lots of chunks :)
so good! I lightly adjusted seasoning to my husbands liking: he is not a fan of hot and spicy food. question: do you give this soup to your toddler?
What did you change? My husband has the same aversion
Made the double recipe today and it was a hit with the kids, even without any topping! We had this with microwaved pappadums. Yummy!
I can’t say that cauliflower ranks very high on my vegetable preference list, so I’m trying to find new ways to prepare it. I actually just made the original cauliflower soup about 3 weeks ago and wished I had doubled the recipe! Can’t wait to try this one!
This soup was absolutely delicious! I will definitely save this recipe and put it into our regular rotation.
I have three small kids so I omitted the green chili and only used the cayenne pepper. The soup had the perfect spice for our younger crew this way.
Thank you for a wonderful (and easy to make) recipe!
Putting this on my list to make this weekend.
And, I feel exactly the same way about Madhur Jaffrey. We go to the same dry cleaner, and I become a bowl of jelly when we’re there at the same time picking up our clean duds.
Your current blog does not print any photos of the food along with the recipes – how unfortunate!!!
Ok, how did all of my favorite food bloggers know that we have vegan house guests coming next week??? This looks fabulous for them!! Also, indian and middle eastern flavors are my absolute favorites!!! I am so excited to make something that combines them. This is making me sound like I’m a crazy person, but honestly, I wish I knew more about indian and middle eastern flavors, so I am always excited to try new dishes that use them. Thank you!
This was delicious! Definitely should have doubled the recipe!! I added more spice but other than that, followed the recipe pretty closely. The optional finishes really take this to the next level, especially the lime and coriander. I used yogurt and lots of rice.
So I made this, and I knew you were right about doubling it, so I did, right off the bat, as I had a whole cauliflower and everything else. The GIANT stockpot required to house 8 cups of liquid and all the rest of it sitting on my gas range comes up to my chin, just about. The very powerful immersion blender I have is short. I’m short. Of course I didn’t wait for the thing to cool down, it’s Wednesday! Soccer Practice! The soup got really well blended before I could see what I was doing (turns out you can spray soup pretty far if your immersion blender is not fully immersed and you can’t see over the rim of the pot for fear of burning your chest and eyeballs) and it had no big chunks, and a boring texture. So I blended it as smooth as I could, added 2 cups of red lentils, and then served it otherwise exactly as written. Delicious. Do not skip the lime, yogurt, black pepper, cilantro or naan bread on the side. My children ate it all up. I used one good-sized jalapeno without seeds. Another good one, Deb, though next time I hope to actually make pretty Cauliflower soup, not Red Lentil Dal!
Delicious, thanks for the wonderful recipe!
When I made this yesterday (and I’ll be making it again tomorrow ) I added 1 teaspoon of sugar. In case anyone is interested :)
And as I didn’t have a chili, I added 1 squirt of sriracha sauce.
Sorry, Deb, for tampering with your recipe. ..
This is brilliant!
After reading your post about Madhur Jeffrey, I promptly checked out “Vegetarian India” from our public library. Also, made this soup last night and it was nearly mindblowing. The splash of lime juice and cream at the end was perfect. Thanks for two great recommendations! Looking forward to more home cooked Indian food in the weeks ahead.
I doubled the recipe, and, like several others, found the finished product too watery.
This looks delicious! I will be making it for lunch today, minus the fresh chili because I don’t have one in my fridge.
I recently discovered that a spoonful of Marmite (half the crowd is cheering, the other half are disgusted, lol!) stirred into water-based soup gives it that extra umami kick. I often use Better Than Bouillon chicken or beef concentrate from Costco, which contains yeast extract, so I decided to try plain yeast extract when I ran out and it worked great. Have you ever used Marmite (or Vegemite, or Bovril), or is this a Canadian (British, Aussie, NZ) thing?
This looks perfect, I will be making it for dinner. Yes yes yes.
What is this yellow half bowl half dutch oven crock-ish dish you’re using to make it in? I sort of love it.
I made this last night and it was absolutely delicious. It was easy to prepare. It’s going on my list for this winter’s soup swap. Thanks, Deb, for another wonderful recipe.
Instead of peeling tomatoes with a peeler as pictured, if you dunk tomatoes in boiling water for 15 seconds or so, the skins just slip right off.
I made this tonight and will eagerly make it again. I thought the recipe was very forgiving as it worked out well with the adjustments I had to make (my ground coriander was running out, my tumeric has gone completely missing–but I added a teaspoon of hot curry powder to help boost the spices). I also left the skins on my tomatoes because I am far too lazy to peel them.
I made a batch and a half, and with the help of my two teenage sons, we nearly emptied the pan (one big serving remains). Maybe I’ll plan ahead and have pita or at least a side salad to serve with it next time!
But the best part was that neither kid complained that the soup lacked meat. In fact, when I asked if they would prefer it with chicken next time, they said it was perfect without it.
Like a few other posters, we aren’t big fans of cauliflower, but there is so much gorgeous flavor in this soup that even this bland vegetable ends up tasty!
Made this tonight. Took your suggestion and doubled it, and I’m so glad to throw a big bag in the freezer. I didn’t have limes, so I made a last minute trip to the store, which was so worth it because, you’re right. It makes the soup. I think next time I’ll reduce the water to 3 cups, as it was a little broth-ier (is that a word??) than I would have preferred. Overall, a fantastic fall soup. Thank you!
I made this tonight for dinner and it was delicious. I made it exactly as per the recipe and found that it did need a bit more salt. I used canned tomatoes cause it was one less thing to prep. I drained them and used the liquid as part of the water. Im glad I did cause the next time I make this I will either up the veggies or use less water. I scooped out about 2/3 of the veggies and blended ok the rest. I would have liked even more of a chunky stew type feel. I also used 2% greek yogurt mixed with the zest and jiuce of a small lime, chopped mint, and a touch of salt and pepper mostly cause I don’t like plain yogurt and I fell in love with the lime yogurt from the sweet potato chickpea dish from your site. It was ridiculously good with the soup. Another winner that’s gonna get a lot of play this fall/winter.
Looks yum! Frankly, I don’t see the point of adding broth/stock to any soup as I think it muddies the flavors of what’s in the pot. Soups have enough flavors already with all the aromatics and vegetables (and meat) and to me, the “layer of flavor” that the stock is supposed to add is hugely overblown! In India we cook our rices, veggies and most other things with water, not stock! Just my opinion :))
This reminds me of my mom’s house in the best ways :) Can I ask where you got those great little spice jars?
I recently found tumeric at the store in the vegetable section, it is a root, like ginger. My goal now, is to use fresh tumeric in recipes, it is a marvelous find.
I will use it in this recipe tonight.
So is there an area on Snapchat where we can see the questions other people ask you (I’m clearly getting old…..)? Also, what time does it start?
I’m so sorry for the trouble but I’ve had to postpone the Q&A. Half of us woke up under the weather which means I will actually spend this afternoon going to the ped and other less glamorous things. Will reschedule soon!
Always looking for new ways with cauliflower. My husband and I are following a low-carb, no sugar diet (life style) and we eat a lot of cauliflower. I will substitute celery root or jicama for the potato to keep the carbs down, but might add coconut milk as some suggested. We like spicy so probably more chilies too.
She describes this soup as a simple one she loved as a child. “It reminds me of Indian hotel soups in the waning years of the Raj,” she writes, which makes me want to sit down for tea with her and beg her for more stories. (Sadly, the times I’ve met her I’ve been too starstruck to say more than hello and a few squeaks about loving her work.) <—- This is EXACTLY how I was when I met you in St. Louis, MO at your book talk/signing a few years ago. It's comforting to know this happens to you, too ;-) Oh, and I CANNOT WAIT to make this soup!!! Fall has FINALLY come to the midwest. Yay!
I am going to try to make it! It looks delicious! I honestly wish I knew how to create my own recipes.
I made this and loved it! Thank you! It was delicious and I was so excited for the leftovers. I only wish I had time to make naan on the side – next time. Your Instagram has really been dictating our menu of late…I made the tomato, zucchini and corn galette, and made the chocolate pavlova on the day you posted that as well (my first one!). All were very much enjoyed, and all will be made again.
Can I just say how amazing this soup is! My two modifications were adding a little bit of curry powder to the soup and not putting it through the food processor leaving it chunky! OMG such a flavorful and delicious dish, I had it with brown rice and basmati aromatic rice. Also the key to getting the most flavor is by letting cool and sit over night.
Also since I didn’t have any fresh hot peppers I threw in dried red chili peppers and those worked wonderfully in there!
Thank you so much for this recipe this is going in my recipe book.
Let me preface my comment with the fact that I am a huge fan of SK. Today alone I made 3 Smitten Kitchen recipes. However, this soup was not my favorite. I followed the recipe exactly and added the recommended garnishes/rice. I figured you could not go wrong with the amazing ingredient list. But this tasted like mildly spiced baby food. Even after the lime juice.
I recommend using your ingredients for the sheet pan chicken tikka. It is wonderful.
I made this last night and it was amazing!!! I will definitely be making it again soon as the months get cooler and cooler. The best part was that I had everything but a cauliflower on hand. Such a flavorful recipe but simple at the same time. Thanks!
Very nice! You have to be careful of the heat…The fresh pepper I used was packin’ some serious capasian! Coupled that with the cayenne pepper fresh from the store and it really needed sour cream. Really an excellent soup once you get it balanced to your tastes
Jaffrey is a living legend. Did you know she introduced Merchant and Ivory? Anyway, this was excellent. I followed pretty closely, had to skip the cumin seeds (none in the house) and threw in an extra potato. Blended half of it then stirred it back in so we got base-level thickness plus chunks. Saw no need for the coconut milk others have mentioned, perhaps due to the richness I got from the blending approach, and couldn’t be bothered to make rice but did make Jaffrey’s perfect naan bread recipe, stuffed them with coconut and dunked them in.
Jaffrey is a living legend. Did you know she introduced Merchant and Ivory? Anyway, this was excellent. I followed pretty closely, had to skip the cumin seeds (none in the house) and threw in an extra potato. Blended half of it then stirred it back in so we got base-level thickness plus chunks. Saw no need for the coconut milk others have mentioned, perhaps due to the richness I got from the blending approach, and couldn’t be bothered to make rice but did make Jaffrey’s perfect naan bread recipe, stuffed them with coconut and dunked them in.
I had no idea! She’s so cool.
I made this as written, which is unusual for me – I usually fiddle with soup recipes. I didn’t read the comments until after it was already simmering, but I’m glad that I didn’t see the comments about it “missing a little something”, because if I had, I probably would have started fiddling – when actually I think it’s pretty spectacular as is. Thanks for another great meal!
I made this today with two heads of cauliflower that were languishing iin my fridge; I had about 8 cups of florets so I doubled all the ingredients EXCEPT for the water which I kept at 4 cups. I was after more of a curry than a soup. It was fantastic even when I snuck a bowl before it had finished simmering. I just blended it to not-quite-smooth (immersion blender) and I think that really thinned out the flavor, so I might leave it chunky next time, but that said my cauliflower-hating, ten-year-old stepson is happily finishing a bowl of it as I type so maybe I don’t change anything. If I didn’t blend it I think adding red lentils would be really nice, the flavor of this is very similar to a super easy masoor dal that I love.
MADE IT! And, I doubled the recipe so I could give some to friends & neighbors.
I’m golden in my building right now.
SO SO SO SO GOOD! No changes, no coconut milk, no broth, just as is.
Again, I’m golden!
Thank you, Deb!!
Deb – congrats on the 10 years! It might sound a bit silly, but I wanted to tell you how great I think it is that after all this time your food blog is still 100% about home cooking, and 100% free (I think!) from sponsored posts. So many of the food blogs I’ve read regularly for several years, that used to be 100% home cooking, now have become just as much about advertising sponsors’ food-related products and writing about sponsored home deco/renovations as they are about the actual home cooking done by the blogger. Some of them manage to do the sponsored post thing quite tastefully, but I still prefer your approach – still home cooking after all these years, despite what I’m sure have been many lucrative offers to do otherwise, given your popularity/success! smitten kitchen is still my go-to and it’s because the recipes are accessible and the writing is great. So congrats on 10 years of keeping it real!
This soup looks divine! I love cauliflower and I love Indian food (a part from Italian of course :-)) so this is another must-try recipe. Thank you!
I made this last night. I doubled the recipes with the exception of the water; I only used about 5 cups in total for the double recipe, and that was PLENTY of water. Since I don’t have an immersion blender, I removed half of the soup and pureed it in my food processor and then added it back to the pot. I think that gave it a nice smooth-to-chunky ratio. I do think it’s lacking something, and I think I will either add some coconut milk or some cooked chick peas (or both!) to the pot when I reheat it for dinner tonight. Otherwise it’s delicious and perfect for these chilly October nights.
This was fantastic. Full of flavor, just enough heat. I added a spoonful of lebneh as a nice, cool contrast. I made it just as our weather turned from a pleasant 60 to a scorching 90 but will love it anyway. As Deb mentioned, be sure to double it. You’ll be glad to have some in the freezer.
I’m usually a big fan but this recipe didn’t work for me – flavor was a little dull despite all the spices, and texture was off. It felt more like a big bowl of partially pureed vegetables than like a soup. I made the double batch but discarded most of it.
I am in full agreement with the commenters who felt the soup was missing something. I tried upping all of the spices a bit, adding some granulated garlic, and even added 3/4 a can of full fat coconut milk, and it still tasted “meh.” However, after several bites, I thought, “maybe I’ll add some more lime,” and I was so glad for that thought. I had already topped my bowl with a healthy squeeze from a lime wedge, but after I added the juice from another lime quarter, the soup had a far more interesting flavor. That extra dose of acid was key, so don’t be shy with the lime juice people. I fully understand what Deb means now when she says “it’s everything.” I think next time, I will try roasting the cauliflower to add more depth of flavor!
I made this over the weekend and it’s delicious. My only question is the rationale for frying up the potatoes along with the aromatics at the beginning. Do they need the extra softening? I just ended up with a layer of blackened starchiness on the bottom of my pan. But I trust you and I trust Madhur Jaffrey, so I’m asking.
No, you don’t and I know this because the first time I made it I got mixed up and added the cauliflower instead of the potatoes first and so they only went in during the simmering step and they had no trouble softening in time. However, sauteeing them directly in all the spices and aromatics gives them a better chance to absorb more flavor at its most potent.
I also ended up with a layer of blackened starchiness — I loved the recipe so much, but will toss the potatoes in with the cauliflower next time.
Thank you – you provided perfect inspiration for a birthday picnic. I brought this and everyone L-O-V-E-D it served cold – it was delicious. I made the following modifications for what I had on hand: used coconut oil instead of olive, used a roasted hungarian hot pepper in place of the cayenne and fresh hot green pepper, and used the full amount of salt. I also used a can of Muir Glen roasted diced tomatoes with roasted garlic which also contains salt. I wonder if a bit of extra salt would help some of the commenters that felt it was flat? When tasting both hot off the stove and then chilled it was delicious!
Made a double batch – without fennel seeds, because I didn’t have any, and with less liquid. The texture turned out great, but the taste is a bit lacking. I don’t think it’s all because I missed out on the fennel seeds … Maybe I should just have upped the quantity of spices a bit?
Was about to double the recipe (as suggested), but held to the original amount and I, too, found it a tad watery and in need of further salt and acid. However, we happily ate it first with the pita/yogurt/cilantro/lime + cucumber salad. Next night sauteed a small piece of cod and layered the dish: steamed spinach, cod, soup with more lime and za’atar and found like most stews the flavor had rounded. The wee bit remaining became breakfast with eggs poached in the soup and served over toasted/buttered pita. I’m sure the bacon on the side didn’t hurt. I adore cauliflower in all life-forms so I’ll happilyreturn to this versatile soup/stew/sauce with a few tweaks.
I really liked the flavors, but, for some reason this seemed to be missing something to me. Maybe I should have left it in the Vitamix longer.
However, it was an excellent start to our vegan diet, sort of moving away from meat. Yum. I think your next vacation should be to India, or Morocco.
I know what I’m making for my wife and I next time it rains! This looks delicious! I have never used cauliflower in my soup, but I’m excited to try it. Thank you for this recipe! My wife and I received your cookbook as a wedding present, and love every dish!
This is a stealth dish.
It seemed too simple/thin at first, but by the end of the bowl I was in love. Went out to buy more cauliflower the next day for more. I served over short brown rice cooked with a spoonful of coconut oil.
I love your recipes, love your inspiration, love your writing – congratulations on 10 years!
I made this Deb and it turned out great! Nice and spicy. It gave me terrible farts though.
This looks delicious! I have a very limited spice rack currently because they’re so damn expensive and I’m a broke 20something. Where in NYC do you like to buy your spices?
Kalustyan’s in Murray Hill!
Some may fine this way too unorthodox, but I’m trying to eat Whole30 and browned some Aidell’s Chicken and Apple Sausages and served them chopped and scattered over the soup with the lime and cilantro. It was delicious and filling.
Made this tonight, 10/4/16, similar outcome to others, despite the heat from my green chile, it was mostly bland, added at least another 1.5 tsp at the end. Lime juice definitely helped the cause. But, did not have cumin or fennel seeds, will try again with those missing items, thinking that will make all the difference. My sig other requested some coconut milk to be added next time…everyone is a critic ;) I’m at 6100ft, no adjustments needed, I probably let it simmer longer than the 25min as written bc I was making naan at the same time.
OMG! So good! My choice of Serranos as hot green peppers resulted in a very spicy soup, and I’m thrilled, but might make a different decision if I wanted a less spicy option and it is a bit overwhelming. The lime is sooooo good, and I need to remember to bring some with me when I take this to school for lunch later this week. I could see chickpeas being good in this and like other people’s ideas of lentils too. Doubling this was a good call, except that my largest pot (6 quarts) is just barely large enough to fit the double batch. Can’t wait until I get to buy a house, have a larger kitchen, and buy an actually large soup pot!
Oops. Reading other comments, I realize I didn’t double the water and that might have made it spicier than necessary, but also probably was the only reason it actually all fit in my pot. Someday with a larger pot I’ll double the water too…
As other commenters have suggested, I used my immersion blender carefully and was pleased with the chunks remaining and final texture.
p.s. I hope nobody thinks it is poor form to comment on your own post. Too late!
It was great! Delicious with some crisp fried onions on top. Some additions I will try next time: fenugreek and mustard seeds, for a little more Indian heartiness. Maybe some more potatoes to smoothen. I had to add some cream to compensate for less than perfect cauliflower (in the soupjoint I worked we found that cauliflower differs a lot in soft and smooth quality, sometimes it’s perfection and no cream is needed, one time it grew more bitter by the minute and we had to chuck it out).
I was super excited to make this, and while it certainly wasn’t bad, my bf and I also found it was missing something. It was significantly better for lunch the next day, also after adding even more lime juice and more yogurt, but still a little so-so. (By the way, the ingredient list for the soup doesn’t mention the lime juice, just the ‘optional’ wedges.) I’ve never had a smitten recipe disappoint, and I’ve also made my fair share of Indian food and have never found anything to be lacking depth or flavor, so I’m wondering whether I did something wrong. I’m not sure the “stir more aggressively” suggestion applies to me …maybe also roasting the cauliflower, grating the ginger and garlic would up the flavor some more? And just generally at least double the spices? (BF is not a fan of coconut milk, so that’s out.)
I made this two days ago and hubs loved it. My tweaks: doubled the garlic, doubled all spices but the red chili, used a combo of red onion and shallot as I ran out of yellow onion, used coconut oil and canola oil combo for frying, and doubled potato with same amount of cauliflower. I pureed mine more than Deb did, but left some chunks in.
Verdict? Better the second day, with a generous squeeze of lime and swirl of heavy cream, topped with cilantro. Served with Indian papadum. Definitely a keeper, but might try what someone else suggested, frying mustard seeds to add more of an Indian “pop.” Thanks Deb! Will post a pic on Insta and see if I can tag you!
I doubled this and am so glad I did. The leftovers kept getting better in the fridge. I used fairly large Yukon gold potatoes, but next time I will use russets – the waxiness of the Yukon golds didn’t fit with the rest of the soup textures. I didn’t think it needed the rice, but this soup absolutely needs the lime. I also added cilantro and sour cream the first time we ate it, which was delicious. I blended about a third of the soup and left the rest chunky, so it felt more like a stew. Really delicious.
This was delicious! My whole family loved it. If you are going to blend it fairly smooth, I wouldn’t bother with peeling the tomatoes, I didn’t and the peels aren’t noticeable. I have youngish kids, so I left out the hot green chili and just used chili powder, it was still spicy, but palatable for them with the rice and yogurt.
I madet his last night for some overnight houseguests coming off of a long road trip and we all thoroughly enjoyed it! I added some frozen lima beans (I totally thought they were peas until I dumped about 1/2 a cup into the pot) and they were a great touch! Next time I’ll definitely remember the lime, I think a citrus pop would’ve pushed it from good to great. I blended it a bit, but left some chunks, next time I’ll probably blend less. Because my timing was a little off I had it simmer for about an hour and I might do the same next time, the flavors really had time to develop.
I made this tonight and loved it! A lot of home cooked Indian flavors always seem to disappoint, but the balance of spices is perfect in this. The only change I made was to use coconut milk instead of water. Will definitely add this to the rotation. Thanks Deb!
Made this for dinner a few days ago and it was fantastic! Followed the recipe pretty exactly, but I did cut the hot ingredients in half for the children of the house. Had the first bowl with a dollop of yogurt, and the second with a dollop of sour cream. Much preferred the sour cream. The verdict from three kids? Two loved it, and one refused to eat dinner that night. Sigh. BUT! The second night he ate it, and it was maybe not his favorite meal ever, but it was not nearly so terrible as he had imagined. I call that a win, and will definitely be making this soup again.
This turned out great for me—I found it plenty flavorful, even without whole spices. Half a jalapeño yielded what I would consider a nice mild heat, and I was liberal with the other seasonings: 3 garlic gloves, a little bit of extra ginger, and heaping measurements of cumin, coriander, etc. I took others’ recommendations and used 2 cups of water and 1 cup of stock, but other than that, followed the recipe as written with cilantro, lime, yogurt, and rice added to the soup at the end! Delicious!
If you were going to add a protein to the soup for a more substantial meal, what would you choose? Beans? Chicken?
For me, beans. Chickpeas might be good, or some yellow split lentils.
I made this two nights ago and it was delicious! Satisfied my curry craving without leaving me feeling too full and like I had eaten too much. I did make a few changes. I upped the spices by a lot. I added about twice the amount of turmeric and probably close to three teaspoons of curry powder. I also let it simmer a little longer after I blended it in order to let it thicken. I will be making it again, really good!
As soon as I added the potatoes and onions on med/high heat, it started to burn on the bottom of my dutch oven. I reduced the heat, took it off the burner for a minute, but the bottom of the pot continued to quickly coat with brown burned gunk. It continued through the steps until I added the cauliflower and tomatoes. The soup is simmering now, so not sure how it will come out. What did I do wrong?
Hi Laura — It sounds like you didn’t have enough fat in the pan (oil/ghee/butter), and maybe the heat was too high? I find that my food can burn in the pan is too dry. Hope it came out fabulously!
It still came out great :) Good to know that adding more fat can help, thanks
Delicious!your fans in Poland had it for dinner today(even our 1.5 year old!).thanks for the twist on couliflower soup-Poles eat it based on chicken stock and with HEAPS of dill.
I thought this was very, very good! After reading some comments and making this 5 days after I intended (yay, laziness!), I made the following changes:
I used one 14 ounce can of fire roasted diced tomatoes instead of fresh.
I used 4 cups of vegetable stock instead of water.
My head of cauliflower was MASSIVE, so I probably had closer to 4 cups.
I used a hot wax pepper (what I had on hand).
I left this simmer for about 40 minutes and then blended about 1/3 with an immersion blender. Delicious, and super filling with just a squeeze of lime juice and with garlic naan alongside. I skipped the cream/yogurt and rice and it was still super hearty! Thanks, Deb, this is my type of meal!!!
Wow, I loved this. I only had ground cumin and not seeds, some leftover canned green chiles and not fresh, and not quite enough turmeric (I probably would have added extra just because I always do). I used fire roasted Glen Muir canned tomatoes. And I didn’t measure out the cayenne, I just added until it was a good heat for me. I read the comment that Indian food is all about the stirring — that’s good to know! Definitely something to try next time.
I blended all of it. It did seem kind of watery, as others have suggested. I added more like 1/3 c of rice because I was really hungry and a generous spoonful of Greek yogurt (and the lime, of course), and at that point it wasn’t watery at all. I made this because I did not at all want a creamy, heavy soup, and it turned out great, despite my substitutions. I think next time I might add a little more potato and maybe a little garam masala or curry powder but this totally hit the spot for me. A little surprised at all the surprised comments — this recipe calls for lots of cauliflower and lots of water and no cream, so if that doesn’t float your boat, try something else.
This was delicious Deb! I subbed lemon for lime juice because that’s what I had and only added 2.5 cups of water instead of 4 because frankly I have a small stockpot and haven’t bought a bigger one yet!!
Nothing burned – kept the heat rather low at the beginning-
Blended it till chunky. Had it with warmed pita, the rice, and a bit of yogurt. Easy, healthy, and delicious!!
Missing something = solved. I made the soup tonight and as written the soup did seem to lack some depth of flavor. I remembered an old Cooking Light trick of adding fish sauce to soup and guac to add flavor. Worked perfectly here. I added about 1-2 tsp of fish sauce and the soup was perfect.
Just a perfect soup as written. Doubled it as you suggested with no regrets!
Thanks for the recipe.
Can this be frozen once fully cooked? If so,mins there anything that needs t be done special? Made it last week and it was great, just did it again.
I liked this recipe! In general I used less water and more cauliflower so my batch was not too thin. I also ate as-is with no rice or pita. My other substitutions/changes:
– Spices: used ground cumin instead of seeds; used coriander seeds instead of ground; used ground ginger instead of fresh; used cayenne and no fresh pepper
– Tomatoes: used a 15 oz can of diced with juices
– Blended the entire batch instead of leaving some chunky – just couldn’t get the consistency right
Just made this today and we loved it. When my husband walked in from work he said the apartment smelled like a proper Indian restaurant!!
Hi Deb, I just made this soup and it is awesome! I added in some canned white kidney beans, for some added protein, at the end (after I blended the soup). It worked well! Thanks for another great recipe :)
This soup was great, made it exactly as described, I was actually surprised how incredibly tasty it was! I agree that adding chickpeas would be a great way to add protein and give it more heft if desired (but not needed!). I love indian food, but it is hard to find “lighter” recipes and this is a great one!
I made this tasty soup last night, it was very flavorful, and I can’t wait to see if the heat-spice has increased in the leftovers.
Changes: used veggie broth, didn’t have fennel so I used whole mustard seeds. I was generous with the spices, doing heaping measurements.
Dolloped a little greek yogurt in there, squeeze of lime, salt and pepper, scooped it out with pita–YUM!
It’s essentially a vegan/veggie soup–if you’re expecting a stew with lots of protein and meatiness, you’ll be disappointed. But with all the garnishes it’s filling and delicious!
I do not like curry dishes, per se. Building the curry (instead of using a pre-made curry blend) in this dish made this soup very enjoyable, indeed. My husband and I ate this entire batch in an embarrassingly short amount of time after I made it last week. I’ll be making more before the weekend is here. The lime really makes the dish special. I may use this particular spice combination in other dishes, we loved it that much.
I made this soup just as written with the recommended garnishes and loved it! It is so creamy and delicious.The squeeze of lime juice makes the flavors pop.I gave the recipe to 3 friends to try. Thanks for writing such great recipes and testing them – I rely on your recipes because they turn out every time!
I was trying to figure out why my soup isn’t the right color and I think that in my rush I may have forgotten the turmeric. Do you think I can add some in after the fact? Or do you recommend anything else?
Made this last night and it was delightful. I was heavy-handed with the spices and probably used 1.25-1.5x what was listed — no problem.
Re: wateriness, I left the cover off while it simmered, so some of the liquid evaporated. Then I stick-blended it until it was thick but still had plenty of chunkiness. It was a great texture.
A real “more than the sum of its parts” recipe! I’m putting this one in the rotation.
mmmmm this looks delicious
This was the perfect fall soup! As Deb suggested, I doubled the recipe and I’m so glad I did. I’ve got lunch figured out for the rest of the week. It really cleared out the sinuses in my house.
A few things I learned while making this recipe:
— Yes, you really need to peel the potatoes and the tomatoes. I’m sure the flavors are still good with the peels on, but the texture is really heavenly without them.
— As with almost all Smitten Kitchen recipes, you get the most out of it if you include all the “extras.” I really don’t think this would be as good without the cumin and fennel seeds, the peeled ginger, the lime, the yogurt… etc.
— I agree that there is too much liquid in this recipe. I appreciate previous commenters for alerting me to this potential issue. Because you can always add more water but you can’t take it away, I went with one cup less liquid than the recipe dictates (so, for my doubled recipe, I used 6 cups of liquid instead of 8). I found the texture pleasant, and I cannot imagine it more watery than this.
— For my 6 cups of liquid, I used 5 cups water and 1 cup coconut milk that I had kicking around in my fridge. I don’t think this is necessary, thanks to the silky texture that the soup already carries, but it didn’t hurt, either, for those asking.
— I was not able to fit the doubled recipe into my blender, but this was a blessing in disguise; I blended about half the soup and left the rest as is, resulting in a really nice smooth but still stew-like soup. I wouldn’t recommend blending the whole thing because it is a treat to come across tender chunks of cauliflower and potatoes.
Overall, this recipe is a real winner. This is the kind of soup that I know I will make for the rest of my life. Thank you, Deb!
I read the comments, and made some adjustments based on them, as well as my low-carb dietary restriction. I used a whole standard-sized cauliflower instead of half (didn’t measure it, just chopped it up and dumped it), left out the potato, and used heaping measuring spoonfuls of the spices. I also used 4 cups of vegetable stock instead of water. I pureed the entire thing, with the exception of a few maverick chunks I found here and there. It was absolutely delicious, a perfect texture (not watery at all) with a good, spicy kick. I’ll definitely make it again.
After reading all the comments, I used only 3 cups liquid – half chicken broth, half coconut milk, which was perfect. I ground coriander from seeds and that made the flavor really pop. The rest of the spices weren’t as vivid, so I will increase those amounts next time. I stirred quite heartily after adding spices to the potatoes and onions, and again after adding the cauliflower. Not sure how much difference it made, but it seemed like it helped all the ingredients marry quite well. I’ll definitely do it again next time. Overall, a great soup for cooler weather! Hearty without being heavy, and spicy enough to make my nose run!
This looks amazing! Thankyou so much for sharing, I’m definately going to try this recipe :) I love anything which involves lots of Indian spices. Would you mind if I were to put a link on my own blog to this post?xx
Nice! I wanted it to be a bit heartier, so I added a can of chickpeas (after I blended the soup).
Made this today, delicious! I’m lucky enough to live where I can easily get loads of Indian spices, so I bulked this up with a few secret weapons in my spice rack:
1/2 tsp fenugreek
1/2 tsp dried mango powder
1 tsp garam masala
pinch of asafoetida
If you haven’t discovered asafoetida yet, ORDER SOME RIGHT NOW! If you feel like your Indian dishes are missing a certain something, asafoetida is probably it. I can’t even describe what a difference this one spice makes — I’ve even started adding it to other non-Indian dishes to add that rich, indescribable umami flavor. YUM!
This tasted amazing. I added pumpkin puree to be festive, which added a deepness to the flavor, as well as some crumbles of fresh paneer, or you could use any other fresh salty cheese. Thanks for the recipe!
Thank you Deb for another great recipe!! I had everything in the house to make it, yippee. I used 1 jalapeno for the chili and a can of chunky Rotel for the tomato. I wish I had a lime and some cilantro on hand. I think I will head to the store to pick up garnishes.
Oh, and I made it in the Instant Pot, 12 minutes of pressure with quick release.
Do you think it’d be okay to make this without the fennel seeds? Anything worth subbing?
You shouldn’t use fennel seeds if you don’t like fennel seeds, of course. Anise is close-ish, but a bit different.
It pains me to say but I agree with many of the other commenters who found this a bit lacking in flavor. I added a few more veggies (carrot, red pepper, replaced white potato with sweet), reduced the water, added a cup of coconut milk just before blending, and added spinach just before serving. It turned out delicious. I also found most of the optionals (cilantro, yogurt, lime) to be essential.
I like my soups a bit thicker so while I used the 4 cups I didn’t cover it during the cooking time + used a potato masher instead of a blender to break down the cauliflower just a little bit. The result was more of a curry than a soup and I loved it! I had it on a plate with rice on the side, delicious!
Nice recipe – it’s been ages since I did something with cauliflower! However, I’m glad I didn’t double it because when I make it again, I’ll leave out the fennel (I found I truly dislike the taste) and substitute ground cumin for the seeds (I didn’t like coming across them in the pureed soup). Also, I’ll use only half of a jalapeño next time. I used 3 cups of liquid and liked that consistency. And because I made the soup in my stove-top pressure cooker (9 min on High), I added the potato later, with the liquid, to avoid scorching. Served it with cream (more than just 1/2 teaspoon) and liked it that way.
I’m sorry I was disappointed with this soup. I followed the recipe exactly and mine looks nothing like the picture. Turned out watery and lacked flavor.
This looks so good and would go great with some baked pakoras! yum
I had made and tasted potato soup with rice but never thought of adding cauliflower to it but it seems to be a delicious recipe, will certainly try next time, thanks for this idea.
I made this tonight in our Instant Pot (20 minutes of pressure, then quick release)
We really liked it, and we are spice fiends. I subbed out a bit of the potato for butternut squash (because I had 1/4 butternut slowly withering away in the back of the fridge) and added a leek (same reason as the squash)
I made this twice. The first time as per instructed and it was great. The second time, I listened to your suggestion and roasted the cauliflower. This took the soup to the next level. Delicious!
I highly recommend everyone roasts the cauliflower. Amazing!
I made this soup tonight on a cool, rainy evening, and it was perfect. I will admit that I didn’t measure the spices and I just mashed it a bit with a potato masher rather than blending, but it was great. I was concerned that it might feel like a side dish, but I found it to be a hearty main.
The cashier, when I was buying the vegetables, volunteered to come over. I did tell him Smitten Kitchen, and could see him mentally taking a note. He may have been here already.
My husband, who will. not. touch. cauliflower was so intrigued with the making of this soup (for others) that he had some. And then more. Big score!
I went ahead and made a double batch (my cauliflower weighed exactly what you targeted) since I was making it for five people (but just one course of our lunch), but it did not last long.
Now to spread the word.
Looks delicious! What type of potato? Thanks!
I think any kind will work, but I used Yukon Gold.
For anyone looking to make this in the electric pressure cooker or Instant Pot, this recipe worked wonderfully. The cauliflower softened admirably and blended into a silky purée. Here’s how I did it:
1) Set sauté function to high and sauté the onions with cumin and fennel seeds [I also added about 1/2 teaspoon black mustard seeds] for a few minutes, then add the potatoes and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes. Add ginger, garlic, green chiles, and stir for 1 minute more. Add coriander cumin, turmeric, red pepper, and stir until fragrant.
2) Add cauliflower, tomatoes, 4 cups water, and a couple teaspoons of vegetable Better Than Bouillon. Seal the Instant Pot and set to manual (high pressure) for 8 minutes [I was using big florets, so I bet you could use fewer minutes and still be happy]. When cooking completes, allow pressure to release naturally, blend with an immersion blender until completely smooth, then add in 1/4 cup cream. Season with salt if needed.
Thank you so much for this! I was about to try figuring it out myself – glad I read the comments first. :)
I agree with others that this is missing something. Part of my problem might have been expecting a soup version of SK’s aloo gobi, one of my favorite foods of all time! : ) I doubled the recipe and followed as written, using canned tomatoes. I put in MUCH less water than called for (5 cups for a double recipe) since the requested amount would have made for a very thin soup. To me, this lacks the warmth and depth of flavor you get with the aloo gobi, and is much more tomato-ey, of course. Not a bad soup, just not what I was expecting.
I made this on New Year’s Eve for a light meal and it was wonderful. My grocery store was out of cauliflower (how does that even happen?) so I had to use broccoflower. It was a fine substitution but I will use cauliflower next time. I suggest that if you try this soup you definitely serve it with the rice, lime squeeze and cilantro. Those touches made the dish. I also used a slight swirl of heavy cream on each bowl (it was New Year’s eve, after all) but when we had it again the next day, we left that out and it was just as good. I used my immersion blender to blend it up but left it somewhat chunky. I also doubled the recipe and I’m so glad I did. Will definitely make this again!
Just in time to use my big bag of cauliflower for dinner tonight. Thanks.
I wanna make this tonite. You mention, garlic, ginger green chiles and red pepper, but I can’t seem to find the amount of each in the recipe? And THANK YOU FOR BEING SO AWESOME!!!
Made this last night and thought it was great, but it needed a little tweaking. I missed the part about adding water (cooking with two kids under three) and when I realized it was too thick I used a quart of stock instead. I still thought it could have been a bit thinner. I added extra salt, some garam masala, and a few extra spices to kick up the flavor,but maybe my regular grocery store chain spices aren’t up to par for Indian Cuisine and that’s why I needed more? You were so right about the lime juice. Delicious!
I made this tonight and loved it! I doubled the garlic (as I do with pretty much every recipe I make). I didn’t have whole cumin seed, but did whole coriander seed, so I replaced the whole cumin with whole coriander, halved the ground coriander and generously doubled the ground cumin. I used a jalapeno for the fresh chili. I’ll definitely make this one again! And it’s a good reminder that I really need to explore more Madhur Jaffrey recipes.
This felt like such a fancy lunch. It was really punchy and fresh tasting. This is the second time I made it and I didn’t enjoy the tomato element the first time around so I left them out and added a can of coconut milk to the broth. It was everything I had hoped for!
This was amazingly delicious! My husband and I both loved it and will be adding it to our regular dinner rotation. Based on the comments, I made some adjustments and it turned out perfect:
-Doubled the recipe, meaning I doubled all the spices, used almost a full head of cauliflower (whatever would fit in my pot), 2 15-oz cans of diced tomatoes, 2 potatoes, 2 onions.
-Replaced fennel seeds with mustard seeds (that’s what I had on hand)
-Replaced water with vegetable broth and only added 3-4 cups (again, whatever would fit in my pot)
-Just used 1 jalapeño pepper along with some (not all) of the seeds. Between that and the cayenne it was at a nice spice level – a kick to it but not too hot.
-Added 1 can of coconut milk
If you make it this way it’s a pretty thick soup (more of a stew) but it is absolutely delicious topped with a bit of brown rice, greek yogurt, and some lime juice.
This year my wife asked me to please start cooking one meal a week. I’m a terribly insecure chef (much more confident with regard to doing dishes). The third meal I’ve prepared this year is this soup. Turned out delicious. I added coconut milk (not a lot) and got a rich golden yellow color along with a bit of richness. Thanks for this.
As an aside: My aunt turned me on to your site – great stuff!
If I wanted to add chickpeas for protein, at what point in the recipe should I add them?
Oh my gosh!! What pot is that????
I just made this for the first time for my husband and I. It was so easy, didn’t take much time, and it was truly delicious! Thank you for a great meal!
So delicious on a cold, blizzard-y day! Didn’t have enough cauliflower, so used some cabbage, worked well. Perfect with some naan for dipping. Hit almost medium spice level as written. My nearly-2-year old, who is obsessed with soup, loved it!
Deb, you are always my go-to for recipes!
Yesssss! This is exactly the kind of food I love to cook – and eat! Thank you for sharing!
In a word…delicious! Tomorrow I’ll replace the yogurt with a drizzle of coconut milk.
Made it last night, it’s excellent. Only thing I did differently was sub broth for the water. Pureed a few cups and added it back into the pot for a bit of thickness. Doubled the recipe because of the note, SO glad I did!
I usually love your recipes, Deb, but this one did not go well for me. It lacked a depth of flavor, despite my last minute attempts with ginger, cumin, garlic, and salt. I’d encourage other readers considering making this soup to read the tweaks suggested by others and be ready to play around with flavoring.
This is absolutely delicious! I added the yoghurt (Greek, full fat), the heavy cream, the rice and the lime wedges/juice. Next time, I will also use the cilantro to get that green color, too.
Great meal! Quick prep and delicious – we added green soybeans.
I’ve made this like 5 times and counting! I omit the potato and substitute the cream with sheep yogurt as modifications for my stupid intolerances and diet restrictions. It is always a favorite – and I should just double the recipe and freeze half to always have on hand. It’s so good!
As some other commenters have already mentioned, the soup is too watery, and to me even abundance of spices couldn’t save the end result: no body at all. It either needs more potatoes/lentils/whatever or less water.
So first time commenting, but I have been using your site for about 6 years at this point. I feel like I should say that this recipe as is, is as close in seasoning to my mother in laws aloo gobi as you can get and that’s a compliment! She’s a great cook!
It is very important to have fresh spices and to toast them appropriately before adding any liquid to the dish. Let this simmer longer and the spices get more intense. Those complaining it’s too watery, add more butter, let it simmer longer and blend some of it.
OMG, I blended it smooth and its delicious! Now I will smoke/roast the cauliflower using the same recipe to see how it comes out.
Would using chicken broth add anything to this soup?
Just made this soup. I added a bit salt, then pureed half of the soup, as stated. Added yogurt and the lime juice. It was delicious. Glad I too make a double batch.
Deb, I have been reading your blog for a long time. However, I don’t write comments very often. I had to comment today to tell you how much I like this soup. I made it lunch and it was delicious! I added 1/2 a cup of red lentils instead of the potato, I used one stock cube of vegetable bouillon and I didn’t blend any of it! I loved it. Thank you!
So delightfully good and very easy! Just the right amount of kick, super full of flavors that stand out, and not too rich, which is often my concern with Indian food. Also makes your whole house smell good!
This soup is SO DELICIOUS! I made a double batch (because what am I going to do with the other half of the head of cauliflower anyway??) and, as Deb counseled, was glad I did. I was uneasy about dumping whole cumin and fennel seeds in a soup and came very close to grinding them before adding them. That would have been a mistake. The whole seeds are magical — they add so much flavor and are not texturally weird, as I feared they would be. The chopped ginger is brilliant, too. I processed the soup very minimally with a stick blender, leaving plenty of yummy chunks of cauliflower for texture and interest. For a soup that is vegan and has no rich ingredients, it is hearty and packed with flavor, a satisfying meal. I will definitely be making this again.
Extremely flavorful, with a few additions. Used mostly veggie broth instead of water (3 cups broth, 1 water) and added a quarter cup of coconut milk at the end. I also used canned chopped tomatoes, which worked well.
Awesome! One of my dads top 5 favorite meals.
This was the first recipe on this site (I’ve made a ton!) I didn’t love as-is from the beginning so I’m sure I did something wrong. It was thinner than I hoped and not as flavorful. To give it a little more thickness, I added a can of chickpeas and took half of the soup and blended it in my blender then added it back in to the soup and added some more ginger and a bay leaf and it waa great! My kids loved it and I served mine with hot red pepper flakes on my own.
“So far, this soup has been my favorite thing about 2018.” That’s what my husband said on the 3rd or 4th round of leftovers. On New Year’s Eve, he and I were starting to show signs of sniffles and coughs. Instead of going out, we stayed in and made a double batch of this soup. Turns out to have been the best decision we could have made because we both had bronchitis and the northeast was in a cold snap. We didn’t leave the house for 8 days. But we weren’t eating this soup out of desperation. We loved every moment of it. We did add the basmati rice and lime and cilantro, and those were all great additions. Will make again, and will always double the recipe.
I made this today and it smelled like cleaning products and was totally inedible :( bummed.
How so? Do you think an ingredient was off?
Very tasty soup!! Made it exactly as written, didn’t need to adjust anything. Thank you for the recipe.
This was a smash hit in my house. I read some of the comments about a little lacking depth, and I doubled up on the spices as well as the garlic and ginger. I used jalapeno peppers for a little extra heat, and I used canned tomatoes instead of fresh. I used a blender on about half of the soup which added a nice texture while allowing some larger bites to remain. I also added cilantro and basmati rice as suggested. To top it off, I put a large dollop of sour cream with fresh lime juice and pepper on top. I think this final piece is what drew all the flavors together and really added the depth that I was afraid would be missing. I am looking forward to the leftovers!
Here are some comments about what worked for me:
Love the flavors, but also found it a bit watery. I did most of my simmering with the lid on, which could be why. Also, I hadn’t peeled the potatoes (double recipe), and if I had no doubt they would have broken down more and thickened the soup.
Here’s the order I prepped things in, trying to save time:
– Measure the seed spices and chop the onions and potatoes
– While that bit is cooking, measure the ground spices, chop the garlic and ginger, and cut the cauli into large wedges
– If I had only thought to open the tomato cans ahead of time, I would have been able to pull this off time-wise, by breaking the cauli in with my hands. As it was, I had to throw in a bit of water to stop the spices from burning, turn the pot off and take a break to catch up.
Another note, if you’re using canned tomatoes: 1 can is close enough to 2 cups to save you a measuring cup when you add the water.
Overall it’s very good and I will make again, perhaps with a bit less water.
Thanks for your note; you are not the first person to raise a concern about wateriness, but you are the one that finally pushed me to adjust the recipe to warn others. I’m now suggesting 3 cups, adding the 4 as needed; I’m sorry yours was a little loose but am glad your comment reminded me to warn others.
We LOVED this soup. I’ve made it a couple of times. The first time, I pureed it completely, but we agreed that we would prefer it with some florets left whole. The second time, I doubled the recipe. I coarsely chopped the cores of both heads of cauliflower and added them with the florets of one head. I roasted the the florets from the other head (tossed with olive oil, salt, and pepper then in the oven at 425 until deeply caramelized) and added them after pureeing the soup. Devine! The only other change that I made was to omit the potato because of current dietary restrictions; we didn’t miss it.
Deb – I’ve never run into this problem before. Today (4 June 18), I tried to print the recipe, using the print symbol below. All I got was the SK logo at the top. The rest was a blank page. NO RECIPE! I’ve printed many recipes from you before and never encountered any problem. Have you changed something? I laboriously copied and pasted into a “text edit” page and printed from there, as I really didn’t want to pass up this recipe. I’ve printed other things today and printed the copied recipe after the blank from your website blog, so my printer is apparently working. Have you done a software change or update of some kind? Just trying to get to the bottom of this problem! I definitely plan on printing other recipes from you in the future.
No changes! It seems to be working for me. (I just tried both CTRL + P and the Print icon and both worked for me.) Maybe refresh/reboot your browser and see if it’s better?
I tried all that. I want JUST the recipe, not the entire page (all the pictures and your ruminations along the way – interesting, but I don’t need them in print), so I clicked the printer icon below the recipe (rather than the cotrol+P, which would print the entire page!) , as I always have done for your recipes. It DID print, but all that appeared was the SK logo at the top of the page and the tiny print at the top and bottom indicating what website it is and the date printed (those are from MY computer, not your site), with a HUGE blank white space in between. The recipe does NOT appear. As I said yesterday, I’ve been printing from your website for years and this is the one and only time this has occurred. I printed stuff from other websites following this failure and all came out just fine. It seems to be this particular recipe that won’t work.
I think I’ll try printing another recipe from your site (one I’ve printed in the past) to see if it IS just this recipe or if somehow my printer is no longer compatible with your site. Hope not! Have you updated your programming or something recently (as I have not changed anything at my end)? Wish me luck on a different recipe to see if I can still print from your website. I’d hate to lose that!
Me again – YUP, it apparently is JUST this recipe. I printed “One-Pan Farro with Tomatoes” and it came out perfectly.
If I click the e-mail icon, does that send me the recipe IN an e-mail or does it just provide a link to the recipe? If the former, I could try printing it directly from the e-mail.
If all else fails, I will copy it to a “text edit” page and print from there, but I really don’t want to have to do that. (Especially if this happens again with a future recipe!)
I love your website blog and your recipes. Sure hope I can print them in the future. And thanks for the quick reply – even if it didn’t confirm my problem!
I am so sorry — I cannot figure it out. I put code brackets in each post around the post (literally “donotprint” is the tag) to ensure that only the recipe portions print and they’re in place. In the meanwhile, can you highlight the recipe portion and do a “print selection” from your browser? It’s not an option on all but I used to use it a lot.
Deb, please do not feel bad. These things happen! I already copy/pasted into another application (basic “text edit”) and printed out the recipe for me and a neighbor. Looks so good! Crossing my fingers that this is just an isolated glitch! Your recipes are too good to pass up. No one else seems to have had the problem (and I see NOTHING different in the format of this page from any other recipe listing, so I have no idea WHY it’s happening with this one, either).
I truly appreciate your thorough investigation of the problem. Don’t waste more time on it – we probably will never know WHY it happened. AS long as I have the text edit workaround available, I’m okay with it. Just momentarily panicked about not being able to print your recipes! May it never happen again, but if it does, I have text edit!
LOVE your site and the recipes! Please keep it going – too many of us would be bereft (slight hyperbole there!) if you stopped!
Thanks again for looking into this and reponding so promptly – very kind of you.
Made this tonight in my Instant Pot. Followed one commenter and after sautéing all the veggies/spices, pressure cooked on high for 8 minutes and let it natural release. I heeded the warning for less liquid and along with 2 c water, added one can of coconut milk. Used my immersion blender and left some chunks. Served with brown Indian basmati rice, cilantro and a sprinkle of lime juice. This was delightful. Even my 2.5yr old downed it with some garlic naan.
I have made this a few times, I added chick peas this time. WOW.
Thanks for recipe, a keeper forevah.
REALLY not a fan of lime and fennel. Should be okay to emit, right?
Yes, you can adjust it to your tastes, but you might want to use lemon instead of lime, some acidity is best for the soup.
Another way to thicken this – and make it more of a whole meal – is to add about 3/4 cups dried lentils – red or green. They cook really quickly and add protein to the dish. If you do add the lentils yo may need the full 4 cups of water.
I made this but added some different veg (used up a leftover veggie tray) and didnt blend it. Flavours were so good! Thanks!
I love your recipes and website! Although I’ve made quite a few of your recipes, this is my favorite! Today I’m making it for the third time in under a month.
I’m from Sri Lanka and had all the spices at home so I tried it out with a couple of tweaks. My suggestion for additional flavor, and less water, is not to close the pot while letting it simmer on low. Also, these type of dishes ALWAYS taste better the second day when the flavors get to absorb. Finally, coconut milk also adds a nice subtle balance to the spice.
I made this last night and doubled the recipe. I used 1 large onion and it was just way too much onion for me. I just don’t think it needs that much onion. I would use 1/2 onion for the x2 recipe next time. I like the suggestion of adding a little coconut milk just to give it more creamy element. Otherwise, delicious with the lime and cilantro and toasted pita. I added a tiny bit of honey at the end as well just to balance it all out.
hello this looks delicious do you partially blitz it as there seems to be still some texture ,many thanks in advance x
This looks amazing. I am going to make it this weekend.
I made a Shakshuka-style breakfast with the leftovers, https://ma.rtijn.org/2018/12/16/shaksuka-from-leftover-soup.html
This was a life saver recipe to help me use up a head of cauliflower, few tomatoes, solitary onion, knob of ginger and some potatoes before going out of town. I don’t feel like I can put this in the made tab as I made some alterations based on other ingredients I had to use up (cream and coconut milk) and not having enough of others (ginger and fennel seed) but it turned out spectacular and I’m excited to try it in the fall with the correct ingredients and proportions! Thanks again, Deb!
Also sorry I didn’t mean this as a reply to you Martijn but that does sound yummy!
Amazing soup!! I added chicken stock instead of water. I doubled the recipe as you suggested – so glad I did!
Doubled the recipe and I am glad that I did. It’s so tasty and very satisfying. I used sweet potatoes as that is what I had on hand and it turned out great. Love SK and everything Deb. Thank you for another great recipe! Xx
Any thoughts about adding a sweet potato as a sub for the potato?
It should work fine here.
Wow—made this soup last night and it is absolutely delicious! Even better as leftovers today. I did substitute beef broth for the water since I had some in the fridge I needed to use. Also, added sliced avocado in with the other toppings and it added some extra creaminess. Thanks, Deb. You’re awesome!
This is one of my favorite soups to make, and can eat it for days and enjoy it the same very single day! I have also never found the soup to be too thin or watery, so will continue to make it with 4 cups of water. I definitely enjoy it with a few spoonfuls of rice in it, and the cilantro garnish is a must!
Your recipes are so delicious and so inspiring! I love your photographs. I would love to be able to print the recipe and the photographs together but when I use the print option, only the text appears. Would it be very difficult to allow the photographs to be printed as well. I have noticed on several websites that this works quite well. When you open the recipe and see the beautiful photographs, you know that this is a recipe that must be made. Thank you for your hard work and inspiration to a home cook that is learning so much each day thanks to people such as yourself.
Warming Fall weather soup. I roughly doubled the recipe for leftovers. Out of cumin seeds so I added about 1/2 tsp more of the ground. Also out of cayenne so I used about 2 tsp of adobo sauce. Probably used more ginger than was called for, but I don’t know-I admit to not usually measuring when it comes to soups. Served with yogurt, lime, cilantro, and about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of brown basmati. And the bonus-when I stepped outside to meet the kids at the bus the aroma followed, a couple of the parents said, “mmm, someone’s cooking something good.”
Has anyone used cardamom seeds with the cumin and fennel seeds? I think I’ll try that next week.
Could I make this in an Instant Pot? What would you recommend? Thanks!
i just found out about the newsletter! yay!
Turned out great. My husband thought it could use more spice so I would probably up the amounts next time. We like things a bit spicy. Only thing I omitted was fennel seed as I was out. Would make again. Thanks Deb
Wow love this soup cold nights are coming in so much needed winter warmer. I swapped potatoes for sweet potatoes as that’s all I had in the cupboard.
Made this last Wednesday – the flavors are on point, and I think the added swirl of cream (I used 2% greek yogurt) greatly enhances the flavor and texture. I would recommend doubling the potatoes – I enjoyed them immensely and found they were few and far between. Next time, I may try to use something to help cut down on the prep time, as all the chopping was a bit time-consuming.
Oh my God. Make this right now.
Double this and throw in a can of coconut milk at the end.
I made this exactly as the recipe states except I roasted my cauliflower before adding it to the soup. I figured that roasting squash makes squash soup better, so why not cauliflower? It was AMAZING. I think it’s the missing ingredient that everyone is talking about. Also, I blended all the soup to make it thicker.
Thank you for this recipe! I saved it a long time ago and dug it out recently when we were in the mood for soup. My husband and I have cut way down on meat and we both love Indian food, so this was perfect on a cold Chicago day! I followed the recipe exactly, mashed a bit with potato masher and served with warm buttered naan on the side. The leftovers made delicious lunches for us both.
Every time I make this I wish I had made more. It is So. Damn. Good.
my new absolute favourite !! we now have this at least 2 or 3 times a week now .. i now also make a few very slight variations … and all are stunning and delicious .. thank you so much for this amazing recipe :) :)
Variations .. i sometimes add about 250ml coconut milk at the end of cooking and a small bag of fresh baby spinach leaves coarsely chopped up, and just left to wilt in hot soup … ive also done this with the addition of button mushroom ( halved or quartered dependant on their size ) all variations have been as delicious as the original and i am so thankful to have found this tasty healthy delicious soup THANK YOU :) :) xx
I used a small can of Rotel tomatoes, and left out the hot green chili. It was still plenty hot enough, and very tasty. Also, not overpowered with tomato.
Yet another fantastic recipe. I agree with many other commenters that the spices need to be upped – I don’t measure closely, but I’d say I at least doubled them. I also had 3/4 of a can of coconut milk from another recipe that I used for some of the water, which was a nice addition. Served with greek yogurt, pita, and some avocado on top, which was great.
I seem to make this recipe every 3 months. It tends to take on the flavours of the season. Today I added snap beans from the garden. An ear of leftover corn kernels, 1/2 red lentils (sometimes I add green or black). It is always delicious. Today I did make a mistake, I mistook my anise seeds for cumin seeds, of course, they are labeled, I did not even look at the label. I have done a few taste tests and it looks like it is going to be just as tasty. What a fabulous recipe!
I used 3 cups water, doubled the ground spices, added garbanzo beans, 1 a tsp of sugar and 1 tablespoon of curry powder. YUM. Thank you!
This is crazy good soup that comes together easy. The Indian spices are not overwhelming so this is a perfect dish to start stretching your pallet. Don’t skip the cilantro or lime as the combo brings other flavor forward.
I love this one and have made it a number of times. I made it this most recent time in my instant pot. High pressure 12 minutes while also cooking the basmati rice pot-in-pot on top of the soup. Quick release as soon as the 12 minutes are up. I used the 3 C of liquid and it worked really well.
Tonight was the second time I made this. The taste profile is dynamite, which brought me back, but I felt like I was missing something the first time as some folks have also said. For me, I wasn’t fully satisfied with the texture I achieved the first time around (found the cauliflower didn’t blend up well to my preference with the immersion blender, stayed a little grainy throughout the soup). This time I took a ladle and took a few minutes to extract about 2 cups of anything soup that WASN’T cauliflower, and transferred it to a blender. I blended until completely smooth then transferred back to the pot. PERFECTION.
I swear to you, this is the best recipe on the whole site. Double it and throw in a can of coconut milk at the end.
This was a hit! I mushed it maybe just a little bit more and added more potatoes. It was like a less spicy pao bhaji. Definitely wish I had the pao, so I’ll make it next time :)
Delicious! To preserve texture, I pureed everything in the pot with my immersion blender and then added chopped cauliflower I’d sautéed until browned and softened. Very successful!
Have a few suggestions, based on having made/eaten the soup, yesterday. If you want the soup somewhat chunky, it might be worth setting aside some of the solids before pureeing. I found that it was difficult to get chunky results from using a food processor. Regarding wateriness, I used the 3-cup addition of water, and thought I still would have preferred a thicker result. Next time, I’ll either add more potato, or use even less water (can always add in, later). Lastly, about the hot chile peppers, be careful! Deb says “to taste,” but it’s hard to know how spicy the soup results will be, unless you test a seed & a bit of the flesh of the pepper, prior to throwing into the pot. We omitted the seeds, and cut the cayenne by half. The soup was, still, just on the edge of being too spicy for us. That said, we thought it was very good.
Does the Indian spiced cauliflower soup freeze well? We love it and would love to always have some on hand.
Yes, it does freeze very well. We love it, too.
Yes, it should.
I made this recipe a few years back and it was OUT OF THIS WORLD!! I am a huge fan of your recipes and TRUST completely every bit of information you give! Fast forward, I made this recipe last year and it was ehhh…. I couldn’t figure out what I did wrong because I follow great recipes exactly as printed. I loved this soup, so, a year later I made it again and ehhh. I have read through the comments and there seems to be mixed reviews… Deb, could it possibly be the “quality of the cauliflower” being used at a given time?? For example I have eaten a carrot that is super delicious one day and then months later (new bag of course) my carrot is ehhh…. Having said all this I just bought a head of cauliflower and am going to try again… if it works, lucky me!!
Lastly, I have printed and made so many of your recipes that all I really need to do is staple them together and……
Instead I have asked my kids for your cookbooks for Mother’s Day ….
This was incredible! Loved it. Used homemade freme crachie and rice. Thought I went to heaven. Fabulous. A keeper and can’t wait for leftovers.
Absolutely delish – great recipe didn’t have every spice in the right state, whole coriander not ground, ground cumin not whole, but it was still wonderful. Threw in a little celery and carrot I had lying around, didn’t hurt it in the slightest. Used whole yellow cherry tomatoes instead of chopped. Blended but left some chunks. The lime juice is the game changer.
This soup is amazing !!! Amazingly good!
Snow storm coming so the only change was , I didn’t have any potatoes.. so I simply left them out , used the 3 cups of water and , yes ! Used Greek tougher , half of lime and 2 T of choooed cilantro for garnish ! Absolutely delicious!! Is definitely on my make again !!! Thank you !!
Sorry for typos .. I was excited about how good this is . I used Greek yogurt, and chopped cilantro… Sorry 🙄
Simply delicious! The lime finish is a must. Thank you!
Delicious! I made this for a working lunch and we all loved it. I used two smallish medium potatoes, a whole head of cauliflower (on the small-med side) and chicken stock instead of water (whole carton). Also didn’t peel the tomatoes. Was just wonderful. I made it the night before and then heated it up in my instant pot (zero minutes on manual setting). Was the perfect thing for a working lunch. Thank you! I will be making this again.
I make this all the time and it never lets me down. I never have whole fennel or cumin seeds so I skip it and add extra ground cumin and the flavor never seems lacking (although I’m sure it’s much better as written). The lime finish should not be optional. I also top with plain Greek yogurt and scallions/cilantro if I have it. I recently made it with whole tomatoes instead of canned and thought it was great. One of my favorite smitten kitchen recipes!
I made this last autumn and it was so good I have been waiting for the temperature to drop a bit so I can justify making it again. Only caveat is that I don’t have a proper blender and my little cheap one didn’t do a great job with it. I ate it as a soup the first night and realized upon reheating that it actually made an even better dip, so I had the rest with flatbreads. delicious and versatile!
Made this soup today, fantastic! Love the colour, texture and spicy taste.
This was a HUGE HIT at my last dinner party. Thanks for being amazing and funny and writing the best recipes. I always know where to turn when I need ANY kind of dish.
Over the last few years, this has become one of my go-to soups. In fact, I made it just yesterday. It’s always a winner. Curious, what prompted the name change?
This was delicious! I blended half with a hand blender and combined it all at the end. I followed the recipe exactly, except for one thing: I realized too late that I didn’t have a potato, so I used 1/4 cup of split red lentils. I’ll definitely make this again, with a potato or the lentils!