I wanted to make this soup to post all of last week. It is a perfect fall dish, warm, gooey and cheesy. But it just kept raining around here and I was nervous I wouldn't get a good picture of the final product. After more than a week straight of rainy, gloomy days I decided to just go for it and hope the pictures turned out. It's tough because you want yummy comfort food like this on the gloomy days not on sunny, warm days!
This broccoli and cheese soup is full of big chunks of broccoli and shreds of carrot. I love packing this soup with as much veggie goodness as possible. I lighten things up a bit by using half chicken stock and half milk–but really when a recipe calls for a pound of cheese you really can't consider it light. The one tricky thing about this recipe is getting the cheese to melt smooth and creamy. The trick to this is to take the soup off the heat for about 5 minutes before stirring the grated cheese in. If the soup is too hot the cheese will curdle a bit. Even if it curdles some it will still taste like a dream. Serve it up with a crusty roll for dipping. Just like at Panera!
Broccoli and Cheese Soup2 Tbsp butter
1 medium onion, chopped
8 oz shredded carrot
1-16 oz bag baby bud broccoli florets, if you can't find this you can use chopped broccoli
1/2 tsp nutmeg
4 cups chicken stock
3 Tbsp flour
3 cups milk, whole will make it creamiest but low-fat and skim will work
1 lb mild cheddar cheese, grated
salt and pepper to taste
In medium sized pot (at least 4 quarts) melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onion and carrots and saute until tender. Add the broccoli and nutmeg and stir to combine. Pour the chicken stock into this mixture and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add the flour to a medium mixing bowl. Slowly pour in just a little milk, using a fork or whisk to mix the flour into a smooth paste. Slowly whisk in the rest of the milk. Pour the milk into the soup and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently until thickened. Once the soup is thick, remove from the heat. Let rest for 5 minutes. Stir the cheese in 1 cup at a time until all the cheese is melted and combined into the soup. Serve with crusty bread or rolls.