Place large, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Add olive oil and onion. Sweat until translucent. Add garlic slices, rice, and bay leaf and cook for one minute. Stir in cauliflower florets and cook for another minute. Slowly add milk. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, and cover. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until florets are tender and rice is cooked.
Remove pan from heat. Working in batches, puree hot ingredients in blender until silky smooth. Return soup to pan and add salt and pepper. Divide soup among six warmed bowls. Garnish each with Curry Vinaigrette and sprigs of micro cilantro or cilantro leaves. Serve immediately.
*Chef’s note: Soup can be made up to two days in advance, cooled, covered, and refrigerated. Reheat gently.
Toasted Curry Vinaigrette
Place first three ingredients in mixing bowl and mix well. Pour in oil in a slow, steady stream while whisking constantly. A natural separation of vinaigrette will occur over time. To return vinaigrette to its proper state, simply whisk it.
For Tristan’s Curry Powder:
Place all ingredients in a sauté pan over medium heat. Constantly move pan over heat, toasting spices until they begin to have an aroma. Remove from heat and cool. Pulverize in a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder. Store in airtight container in cool, dark place for up to one week or in refrigerator for up to two weeks.
-Use a squeeze bottle for distributing the Toasted Curry Vinaigrette onto the soup for a more pleasing presentation.