Cauliflower and Apple Purée

The apple in this dish brings out the sweetness of the cauliflower, and the potato adds body and echoes the nutty flavors of cauliflower. The Apple Balsamic vinegar can be found in gourmet shops and better grocery stores. It is a syrupy vinegar made as Balsamic vinegar is made, but uses apple juice as a starting point rather than grape must.

INGREDIENTS:

1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed into florets
1/2 white onion, minced
1 medium-small Yukon Gold (or similar starchy) potato, peeled and diced
1 large apple such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored, large dice
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Vegetable stock or water as needed
Apple Balsamic vinegar (optional, but delicious)

METHOD:

Heat a straight sided 4 quart pan over medium-low heat. When hot, add the butter. When melted, add the onions and sauté gently until soft, but not browned.

Add the cauliflower and potato and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper and gently cook to soften and color a little, about 5-10 minutes.

Add just enough stock or water to come 3/4 of the way to the top of the vegetables. Bring to a simmer and add the apple. Cover the pan and simmer 10 minutes or just until the cauliflower is tender.

Transfer the vegetables to a blender and carefully puree. Add just enough liquid from the pan to get the vegetables moving. Process until smooth, taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Serve hot, and drizzle with a little of the Apple Balsamic as a garnish if using.

YIELD: Serves 4