Friday, August 31, 2012

Broccoli Cheese Soup

I got my Front Porch Pickings basket today, and the ingredients make me think of broccoli cheese soup.  This week's basket is particularly exciting as we can now customize our baskets with extra of a particular produce or remove something we don't use.  This week's basket included: broccoli, carrots and onions;  all three of these are in this broccoli cheese soup.  I loved this soup.  Yes the half and half makes it a bit decadent, but milk breaks down if it boils and this soup tried to often:).  I think this soup would also be super tasty as a sauce on a baked potato.  The only alterations I made to the recipe were that I used beef stock instead of chicken.  (I had like 3 beef cartons in the pantry thanks to bogo sales and obviously I don't use beef as much as the chicken)  I also didn't move the soup to a blender; instead I used an immersion blender.  It was tasty and fairly easy.  It requires making a roux and a lot of stirring in the beginning, but I would say that at least 50% of the time was pretty inactive.  It was quick for me to make, but I used a mandoline to julienne the carrots.  If you were doing this by hand, it would add to your time.  (you can always buy carrots julienned but I feel that that is processing and am positive (but can't say for sure) that there is something added to the prepped veggies that add to their shelf life.  I also, because of the mandoline, was able to prep the carrots (and the broccoli just not on the mandoline) while the onions were cooking.  The broccoli had no instructions as to how to prep.  I would suggest to make your florets pretty small.  I didn't and they didn't submerge like they should have and they took a bit longer to get soft.  So other than that, great recipe and super delicious.  I plan on having it for breakfast and lunch tomorrow;).

Broccoli Cheese Soup

1    Tbs. butter,melted
1/2    medium onion,chopped
1/4 c  flour
1/4 c  melted butter
2 c  Half & Half
2 c  chicken stock
1/2 lb fresh broccoli
1 c  carrots,julienned
1/4 t  nutmeg
Salt and pepper,to taste
8 oz grated sharp cheddar
Saute onion in butter. Set aside. Cook melted butter and flour using
a whisk over medium heat for about 4 minutes. Be sure to stir
frequently. Slowly add the Half & Half, continue stirring. Add the
chicken stock whisking all the time. Simmer for 20 minutes.
Add the broccoli, carrots and onions. Cook over low heat until the
veggies are tender, about 20 minutes. Add salt and pepper. By now the
soup should be thickened. Pour in batches into blender and puree.
Return the puree to the pot and place over low heat, add the grated
cheese; stir until well blended. Stir in the nutmeg. Serve.

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