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Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Prosciutto and Parmesan

The humble cauliflower really shines here, and the crispy prosciutto slices provide a salty counterpoint. Delicious.


  • • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • • 2 c chopped leeks, white & light green parts only (4-5 leeks)
  • • 12 c cauliflower florets (from 2 large heads; about 2 pounds each)
  • • 8 c chicken stock
  • • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • • 1 c grated Parmesan cheese
  • • ½ c creme fraiche
  • • kosher salt
  • • 4 oz thinly sliced prosciutto
  • • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • • ½ c chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Melt the butter over medium heat in a large, lidded stock pot.  Add the leeks and saute, stirring, until soft and fragrant, 4-5 minutes.  Add the cauliflower florets, chicken stock and cayenne pepper. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cover pot. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.
  2. Puree the soup using an immersion blender, or in batches in a blender or food processor.  Whisk in ½ c of the cheese and the creme fraiche.  Taste soup and season with salt, as needed.  (The soup can be made up to 2 days in advance; cool, cover and refrigerate. Reheat over medium heat).
  3. Cut the prosciutto into julienne strips, 3-4 inches long and ¼’ wide.  Heat the olive over medium heat in a medium skillet.  When hot, add the prosciutto and saute, stirring constantly, until crisp and browned, 4-5 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer prosciutto to paper towels to drain.
  4. To serve, ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle each serving with some prosciutto, chopped parsley and the remaining Parmesan cheese.
  • Author: Helen Kain


  • Serving Size: 6