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Friday, January 6, 2012

Broccoli and Cheese Soup

I've been looking for a great broccoli cheese soup for some time now, because you know, you can't always go to Panera when you have a hankering for yummy & healthy soup!  This one works for me -- it's slightly adapted from the recipe found here.

You'll need:
  • 2 c chicken broth (I use 2 c water + bouillon cube/granules)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 small carrot, grated
  • 1/3 c flour
  • 1/4 c butter
  • 1/2 t pepper
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 2 c milk
  • 2 c shredded cheddar cheese (or combination of 2/3 cheddar and 1/3 swiss)
  • 3 c steamed & chopped broccoli (I use a full bag of pre-cut & ready-to-steam)
Here's what you do:
  1. Put the chicken broth (or water+bouillon) in a small saucepan and add the diced onion and grated carrot. Cover and bring to a boil.  Simmer for about 20 minutes, until the veggies are soft.  
  2. Meanwhile, heat the milk in the microwave for about 2 minutes.
  3. While the broth & veggies are simmering and the milk is warming, melt the butter in a larger heavy-bottomed pot.  When the butter is melted, whisk in the flour, salt & pepper.  Stir and cook over medium heat for a few minutes and then whisk in the warmed milk.  Cook and stir this mixture over medium heat for another few minutes, until it's nice and thick.  Turn down the heat while you...
  4. Put the broccoli in the microwave to steam for a few minutes. (Either directly in the bag or in a glass bowl if you are using an actual head of broccoli that you have already chopped up small.)
  5. Add the chicken broth (which should be almost ready by now) to the milk mixture and whisk some more until the entire mixture is well blended, adjusting the heat as needed.
  6. Add the shredded cheese to the soup.
  7. Remove the broccoli from the microwave and give it a rough chop if needed (you can do this in the bag if you want, just pull away the packaging and have at it). 
  8. Add the broccoli to the soup, make sure it's good and hot, and serve! 

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