I’m a purist. When I hear the words “Broccoli & Cheddar Soup”, I think of lovely little broccoli florets swimming in a sea of creamy cheese soup. I don’t need much else in there. Sure, I like a little seasoning, some roux to thicken and a dash of colour when served, but I don’t need anything else. I hate to see peppers or potatoes, kale or other such foreign things. I don’t mean to be rude, if that’s your thing than, well, that’s your thing. I just prefer to taste the headliners in this wonderfully monikered amalgamation.
Lately, in the Guilty Kitchen, there’s been a need for more simple fare. I have less time to spend in the kitchen as of late, and I certainly don’t want to be spending the whole afternoon stirring, mixing or sautéeing. What is that’s creating such an upheaval in our humble home? Well, you’ll have to stick around for a little while. Announcements are meant to be long and drawn out, right? At least that’s what reality television has taught me!
You’ll find out soon enough, as long as you stick around.
Broccoli & Cheddar Soup
3 Tbsp butter
3 Large heads of Broccoli (divided into stems and florets)
1 small onion
1 clove garlic, grated or minced
900mL low sodium chicken broth
1 cup whole milk, warm
3 heaping Tbsp all purpose flour
3 Tbsp butter
2-3 cups sharp cheddar, grated
1/2 tsp mustard powder
2 dashes tabasco
1/4 tsp paprika
salt & pepper
1. Dice onion and peeled broccoli stems very fine and add to a large soup pot.
2. Add 3 Tbsp butter to pot and sauté on medium heat until softened, about 6-8 minutes.
3. Add in garlic and sauté for another 2-3 minutes.
4. Add broth, turn up heat and allow to come to a simmer. Turn down to medium low and continue to simmer.
5. Meanwhile, in small saucepan oven medium heat, melt other 3 Tbsp of butter. Sprinkle flour over melted butter and stir to form a roux.
6. Slowly add heated milk to roux, whisking as you go. Bring to a simmer and allow to thicken. On a slow simmer, with constant stirring, you can cook this cream sauce for up to 20 minutes. Season with salt & pepper.
7. Add cream sauce to broth, whisking to combine.
8. Add grated cheese and make sure it is completely incorporated before adding broccoli florets. You can add the seasonings at this point (mustard powder, Tabasco and paprika)
9. Add in broccoli florets and allow to simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until broccoli is tender. Season with salt and pepper.
10. Thicken with a 1:1 ratio of cornstarch and water if the consistency is not thick enough for you.
Unfortunately, this soup doesn’t save so well. The broccoli tends to become more strongly scented as time goes on, and not in a good way, more like a strong cabbage. Those cruciferous vegetables are notorious for just that. It is good the next day, but I wouldn’t recommend freezing it or saving it for more than 24 hours. Also, the broccoli will change colour as well, becoming a more greyish green as time goes on. It’s still fine to eat, just less visually appealing.