It doesn’t take a lot to make us happy when it’s stark and wintery outside. A big January afternoon might look like this: an hour of ice skating, followed by reading, napping and then bowls of soup by the fire. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? We eat so much soup that there are always the dregs of last week’s creation in the back of the fridge, even as I’m chopping vegetables for the newest batch. This week, feeling gloomy for the lack of snow and the rain and rain and more rain, I sought out a healthful, tasty broth that was completely different from the usual noodle-and-carrot pot of soup. I roasted up some broccoli with onion and garlic with sunny, yellow turmeric and then pureed it all with rich coconut milk. Paul and I both ate big bowls and then brought containers to work on Monday morning. It brought sweet memories of a splendid weekend, even if the events were rather understated.
Roasted Broccoli Soup with Turmeric and Coconut Milk
3 broccoli crowns, trimmed
1 yellow onion, peeled, trimmed, halved and sliced end-to-end into strips ¼-inch wide
2 teaspoons turmeric
1 head garlic
1 25-ounce carton full-fat coconut milk (or 2 13-ounce cans)
2 cups unsalted chicken broth
For topping: Toasted sesame seeds and hot sauce
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut the broccoli into florets, then cut each in half lengthwise. Combine the broccoli with the onion in a large bowl and drizzle with enough olive oil to coat, but not drown, the vegetables. Spread out on the baking sheet with the cut sides down (they’ll brown better that way.) Slice the top from the head of garlic and place on a piece of aluminum foil, cut-side up. Pour one tablespoon of olive oil over the top, wrap the foil around the garlic,and place it on the sheet with the broccoli.
Roast for 30 minutes, or until soft and deeply browned in spots. Remove from the oven and scrape into a large pot. Press out the softened bulbs of garlic, and add them to the pot, along with the coconut milk and chicken broth. Turn the heat on low and warm the soup gently. When it’s just steamy, use an immersion blender to puree the soup, leaving a bit of chunkiness. Or, pulse in a blender to an almost-smooth consistency before heating.
Taste and add more salt, if you like. Serve with a sprinkling of sesame seeds and a few drops of hot sauce in each bowl.