Cheeky cauli & cheese soup

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Throughout the year Alasdair Nunn and Rachel Berry who together form Halifax catering company RachAls Kitchen have been giving up the secrets of their food in a series of recipe columns.

Over the next two weeks they will share a three course Christmas meal alternative to the traditional turkey.

This week we concentrate on the starter, a rich, gorgeous cauliflower and cheese soup.

If you like cauliflower cheese, imagine the taste and then add some .

And next week the crowning glory for a once a year meal, a succulent forerib of beef - everyone’s favourite especially when teamed together with all the trimmings.

Okay, so this is an expensive cut but you’ll certainly get more than one meal out of it and there really isn’t a lot of faffing around once you have prepared it and put it in the oven.

It will also provide stacks of rich spillage from which to make a tasty gravy.

And then taking things back a notch, a light and palette cleansing lemon posset will finish off the meal and lead beautifully into cheese and biscuits, Christmas cake and perhaps a glass or two of of port.

But here we start with the soup which serves six ...

Ingredients

700ml veg stock (from a cube is fine)

400ml milk

50g butter

2 onions (peeled and thinly sliced)

1 potato (peeled and cubed)

2 garlic cloves (peeled)

1 large cauliflower (dark green leaves off and thick stalk out)

250g strong cheddar cheese

salt & black pepper

1 tsp English mustard (optional)

How to make

lHeat the butter in a large saucepan, allow it to go brown but not burnt. Add the onion and potato

and cook until softened, about 5 mins. Add the cauliflower, garlic, stock and milk.

lBring to the boil, then reduce the heat and leave to simmer for about 30 mins, ensuring all the vegetables are soft.

lAdd the cheese, blitz with a hand blender or in a food processor, season and add the optional English mustard.

lServe with the home made bread recipe which featured in the Courier on September 30 (online at www.halifaxcourier.co.uk).