I can’t believe that it’s already mid-November. There are only 6 weeks left until Christmas. Which also means that I’ve only got about three months left of my maternity leave.

This year has flown by so quickly. It seems like just a few days ago we welcomed Olivia into our lives, and now she’s just a couple of months away from her first birthday.

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As much as I LOVE spending my days with my littlest BFF, I’m also really looking forward to returning to work. I can’t wait to get back to adult conversation, the challenges of my career, and, most importantly, going to the washroom without an audience of a baby and two cats.

What I’m not looking forward to, however, is the transition of being a stay-at-home mom, to a working one. I always get nervous about the unknown. How will Olivia handle being in full-time care all week? How challenging will it be to only spend limited amounts of time with her each morning and evening? How will I manage to still provide healthy and delicious meals for our family while also working full-time and commuting  two hours each day?

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While I don’t know how Olivia and I will handle being a part for majority of the days, I do know that it will be possible to still provide delicious meals for our family. All I need is a plan.

In my last few months of maternity leave, I’m trying to add to our list of go-to dinners. Dinners that are easy to whip up on a weekday, or freeze easily for those nights where you just don’t feel like cooking.

This soup is definitely a winner. It’s creamy, a little spicy, and is perfect for a rainy autumn night. The recipe below gave me six servings. Three of which were eaten fresh, and three of which were frozen for a later date.

I served this with a piece of crusty French bread, warmed in the oven, and lots of love.

CURRIED CAULIFLOWER SOUP

from Shutterbean

1/3 cup raw cashews
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 large head of cauliflower, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (14 oz) can of light coconut milk
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
salt, to taste
caramelized onions (see recipe here)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro

In a blender, chop the cashews until they’re finely ground. Add 3/4 cup of water and blend for another two minutes. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl or liquid measuring cup. Make sure to press all the last bits of liquid out of the solids. Discard solids and set liquid (also known as cashew cream) aside.

In a large pot over low heat, sauté the onion in the olive oil until golden. Add the garlic and stir for one minute. Add the cauliflower, coconut milk, cashew cream, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, sugar, cinnamon, and salt (to taste). Add enough water to over the cauliflower and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer until the cauliflower is fork tender, about 10 minutes.

Now it’s time to blend. An immersion blender would be perfect, but since I don’t have one, I used our regular blender. In batches, of course (and don’t forget to hold the lid down). Return the blended soup to the pot to reheat and then ladle into bowls and garnish with the caramelized onions and cilantro. Eat and enjoy.

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