1 small head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 rib of celery, chopped
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups shredded reduced-fat white cheddar cheese (6 ounces)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil.
2. Set aside 12 bite-size cauliflower florets. Coarsely chop remaining cauliflower and set aside.
3. Drop the 12 florets in boiling water and blanch for 2 minutes. Drain and set aside.
4. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and celery, and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add chopped cauliflower, broth, half-and-half, thyme, pepper, and nutmeg.
5. Cover and simmer until cauliflower is tender. Puree the soup in a blender and return to the pot.
6. Stir in the cheese and salt until the cheese melts and the soup is heated through, 3 minutes. 7. Serve topped with cauliflower florets.
TIP: For a vegetarian soup, use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.
Nutrition (per serving): 182 calories, 11 g protein, 9 g carbohydrate, 10 g fat, 37 mg cholesterol, 350 mg sodium, 2 g dietary fiber