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Leviton's Cauliflower Vichyssoise

Plus: More Soup Recipes and Tips

  • Servings: 4

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  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 large leeks, white and tender green parts, thinly sliced
  • One 2-pound cauliflower, cut into large florets
  • 6 cups water
  • 1/3 cup crème fraîche
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely diced peeled cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons minced chives
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 Wellfleet oysters, shucked, liquor reserved
  • Osetra caviar (optional)


  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the leeks and cook over low heat until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the cauliflower and water and bring to a boil. Simmer over low heat until the cauliflower is soft, about 35 minutes. Add the crème fraîche, bring back to a simmer and remove from the heat.
  2. Puree the soup in a blender in batches until very smooth. Season with salt and pepper and chill thoroughly.
  3. Just before serving, combine the cucumber, chives, shallot, vinegar and olive oil in a small bowl. Ladle the cold soup into 4 shallow bowls and spoon an oyster and some of its liquor into the center of each. Spoon the cucumber mixture around the oysters, top with a dollop of osetra caviar and serve.
Contributed By Photo © Maura McEvoy Published July 2000

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