April 25, 2011

Broccoli Cheese Soup

Not only do I love creamy soups, but I absolutely LOVE broccoli and cheese. Put the combination into a soupy mixture, and I'm there. This is one of the best broccoli cheese soups I've ever had. That may or may not be because it's homemade. {Einstein I love your version but real cheese does not taste or look like that} Anyway, I love this soup, and it's perfect for a rainy day like today. 


Broccoli Cheese Soup 
Serves 4
1 tablespoon melted butter                                              
1/2 medium chopped onion
1/4 cup melted butter                                                         
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk or heavy cream {Or half-and-half}                                         
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 pound fresh broccoli                                       
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg {Optional-Me and nutmeg are still trying to settle our differences}
8 oz. grated sharp cheddar cheese {There is no real need for this much cheese, but if you want it, then pour it on in.            
salt and pepper

1. Saute the onion in the butter and set aside.  Cook the melted butter and flour using a whisk over medium heat for 3-5 minutes – stir constantly and then add the milk or heavy cream.  Add the chicken stock and simmer for 20 minutes.
 2. Add the broccoli and onions to the soup and cook over low heat for an additional 20-25 minutes.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Take 1/2 of the soup and puree it in a blender, then add it back to the pot with the remainder of the soup.  Stir in the cheese and nutmeg.
  
Homemade Croutons
Cut French bread or boule into 1/2-inch cubes.  Heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil in a saute pan.  Add the bread cubes to the pan and sprinkle with salt; cook over low to medium heat, tossing frequently – 5 to 10 minutes or until nicely browned. Add more olive oil as needed.

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