Winter is my favorite season. I love the crisp, chilly weather and all of the cuddles in front of the fire. I love winter so much that our family packed up two years ago and moved to the mountains so we could enjoy the snow. However, when January came around this year, we still had no snow.- *gasp & cue the sad face*. Needless to say the kids, and myself, have been extremely disappointed.
But finally it happened!
Last week we got a little bit of snow!
I was so excited that by the time it started to fall our dinner menu for the night quickly changed and we made a quick dash to the grocery store for some snowy weather must-haves. After all, what could be better than some hot, creamy Broccoli Cheese Soup? It’s creamy, it’s cheesy, and it’s full of flavor and lots of healthy stuff! Normally I would buy bread bowls for this but we ended up snagging 2 loaves of discounted french bread at Walmart. I mean, who doesn’t love discounted food!
So as my husband prepared the fire…
I started dinner- Yum!
I should note that this soup has been a work in progress for almost 10 years now. But as of last year, I finally got down the perfect ratio of everything it needs. It has become a family favorite and I usually double it up just so there is enough for everyone for 2 or 3 days.
I begin by adding 6 cloves of garlic and a small yellow onion into my ninja food processor. I then add this to a pot with 2 Tablespoons of melted butter and saute this for 2 minutes. While this is happening, I add 3 carrots and 2 celery stalks into the ninja and pulse about 4 times or until they are a small chunks. These get added to the saute mix and they continue to soak up that flavor for another 2 minutes. After the 4 minutes are completed, scoop this into a bowl and set it aside.
The next step happens extremely fast, in the beginning, so make sure you have everything ready to go. Add 4 Tablespoons of butter to the pot and allow it to melt. Then whisk in 4 Tablespoons of butter. As that thickens (you may see some flour not incorporated, but that’s okay) slowly pour in about 1 cup of the chicken broth and continue to whisk…
*Side Note* It is important for the chicken broth to be at room temperature so that it heats quickly and thickens quickly
…About now I have made sure that my stove is on a medium-high flame. When this thickens, add in the rest of the chicken broth at the speed of about 1 cup at a time. Each time waiting for the mixture to thicken before adding more. Of course, each cup added the thickened product will not be as thick as the last, but you will be able to notice a creamy, soup like base.
While doing this, you will have enough time to “shave” your broccoli crowns and give them a rough chop.
Now it is time to add in your saute mixture as well as your broccoli and boil for 5 minutes. Then add in the half & half and simmer for another 5 minutes. Lastly add in the milk and simmer for another 5 minutes.
By this point you need to decide if you are happy with the consistency of your soup. If you are unhappy with it, all is not lost. Keep your soup at a simmer and in a separate bowl whisk together 2 Tablespoons of cornstarch with 4 Tablespoons of cold milk and immediately add this into the soup. Allow it to thicken for a minute or two and then turn off heat.
Add in your seasonings and cheese. Then stir and taste…STIR AND TASTE!
Hey, someone has to try it right.
- 6 TBSP Butter
- 1 Small Onion – finely chopped
- 6 Cloves Garlic – finely chopped
- 3 Carrots – finely chopped
- 3 Celery – finely chopped
- 4 Broccoli Crowns- Shaved & Chopped
- 4 TBSP Flour
- 6 Cups Low-Sodium Chicken Broth
- 2 Cups Half & Half
- 2 Cups Milk
- 1/2 TBSP Salt
- 1/2 TBSP Pepper
- 1 Tsp Cumin
- 1 Cup Parmesan – Grated
- 4 Cups Sharp Cheddar
- In 2 TBSP butter, saute onion and garlic for 2 minutes
- Add in carrots & celery and saute for an additional 2 minutes
- Put aside in a bowl
- In the same pot melt the left over 4 TBSP butter and whisk in flour
- Add in 1 cup of broth at a time. Constantly whisking and allowing thickening to happen before adding the next cup
- Add in saute mixture as well as the broccoli. Boil for 5 minutes
- Add in half & half and simmer for 5 minutes
- Add in milk and simmer for 5 minutes
- Turn off heat & add seasonings and cheese
- Stir, Taste, and serve with butter toasted bread or in a bread bowl