Broccoli Cheese Soup (Vegetarian)
- Serves: 4 – 6
- Preparation Time: 15 minutes
- Total Cooking time: 35 minutes
On a cool, brisk autumn day, with the leaves on the trees lighting up the shortened days with a blaze of gold, orange, and red, there are few things that bespeak of comfort food more than a bowl of soup and a chunk of warmed French bread. This recipe is one of those soups that, while divine the first day served, is positively heavenly reheated the next day after the flavors have had a chance to truly blend. It is also vegetarian based (with the exception of the cheese and milk) so those out there who don’t like or cannot eat meat can enjoy it too.
|2 1/2||cups||peeled and diced potatoes (about 3 med potatoes)|
|2||cups||yellow onion, chopped (about 1 medium onion)|
|1||cup||carrot, peeled and diced|
|3||cups||broccoli, stems peeled and chopped, florets divided and set aside|
|6||cups||vegetable stock (about 3 cans)|
|4||cups||Milk (whole milk works the best)|
|1 1/2||cup||cheese sauce mix (available in the bulk food section)|
|2||cups||shredded mild cheddar|
|Black pepper to taste|
|4||tbsp||butter or margerine|
Heat a heavy bottomed pot over high heat and add the oil and 1 tbsp butter. Next, add in the onions, carrots, and broccoli stems and sauté until the onions turn translucent. Reduce the heat to medium and add in the vegetable stock, pepper, garlic salt, celery salt, and potatoes. Bring to a brisk boil. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes and vegetables are tender. While the soup is simmering, steam or microwave the broccoli florets until just tender (about 10 minutes in the microwave) and set aside. When the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork, puree the vegetables with a stick blender or regular blender until the soup is smooth. Add in the milk and bring back to a simmer. Whisk in the cheese sauce mix and shredded cheese until very smooth. Add the broccoli florets and fold in the remaining butter or margarine. Serve in warmed bowls, garnishing with a dollop of sour cream, and a sprinkling of bacon bits (for the non vegetarians) or a few caraway or dill seeds(vegetarian) if desired.