Topaz is one of the birthstones for November. Topaz is found in many colours, but it is the orange-yellow topaz that is the traditional birthstone for November. Topaz is a symbol of friendship.
Citrine is also a November birthstone. Citrine is actually a quartz crystal and is yellow to orange in colour. It is often mistaken for the orange-yellow topaz which is the more expensive of the two birthstones.
The flower for the month of November is the chrysanthemum. The word chrysanthemum comes from the Greek words chrys and anthemum. Chrys means golden, the original colour of the chrysanthemum, and anthemum means flower. The symbols of the chrysanthemum are optimism and joy.
Scorpio and Sagittarius are the astrological signs for November. Birthdays from November 1st through the 21st fall under the Scorpio sign. November 22nd through November 30th birthdays fall under the sign of Sagittarius."
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 leeks, sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 large cauliflower, roughly chopped
2l (64fl oz.) chicken stock
100ml (3fl oz.) single cream
75g (2½oz) shelled pistachio nuts
25g (¾oz) sesame seeds
1tsp coriander seeds
½ tsp sea salt
1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the leeks, garlic and celery and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the cauliflower, cook for 2 minutes, then pour in the stock. Bring to the boil and simmer, partially covered, for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
2. Remove the soup from the heat and allow it to cool a little. Add the cream. Purée the soup in batches in a food processor or with a hand-held blender.
3. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Gently reheat and serve hot, sprinkled with dukkah.
4. Dukkah is a Middle Eastern spice mix. Make it by toasting the shelled pistachio nuts, sesame seeds, coriander seeds, and sea salt in a heated frying pan until fragrant. Grind in a small food processor until crumbly. Any leftover dukkah can be sealed in a screw-top jar.
The cauliflower and leek soup and the dukkah can both be made up to two days in advance. The soup can also be frozen, if required.