Cream of cauliflower with raisins and barley

for 4-6

  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 leek, white only, roughly chopped
  • A good knob of butter
  • 1 small- to medium-sized cauliflower, roughly chopped, with the dark outer leaves cut off
  • 750ml vegetable stock (a good cube will do)
  • 500ml milk
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 3tbsp faro (Italian barley), soaked in cold water for 3-4 hours and simmered in salted water until tender – or some (200 ml?) cooked pot barley
  • 3tbsp raisins, soaked in hot water overnight
  • 1-2tbsp freshly grated Parmesan
  1. Melt the butter in a pan and with the lid on gently cook the onion and leek, without colouring, for 6-7 minutes, until they are soft.
  2. Add the cauliflower, stock and milk. Season, bring to the boil and simmer for 35 minutes, with a lid on, or until the cauliflower is soft.
  3. Blend in a liquidiser with the Parmesan until smooth and strain through a fine meshed sieve.
  4. Add the raisins, and any soaking liquid, and the barley, bring back to the boil and season again if necessary.
  5. You can add a little more Parmesan for added savouriness if you wish, or the pesto.
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