I’ve been working on my broccoli-cheese soup recipe off and on for a few years, and I finally figured it out today. This is a pretty solid recipe, and the flavor reminds me of my favorite version from St. Louis Bread Co. (Panera Bread to all you outsiders). It’s creamy, a little tangy and very filling.
A note about the broth: I used fat-free half-and-half to cut back on the calories and fat in this soup, and it worked out perfectly. I suspect you could also use one cup of half-and-half and one cup of milk, if you were concerned about these things.
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups half-and-half
2 cups chicken stock
8 to 12 ounces of fresh broccoli, cut into florets
1 cup carrots, sliced into matchsticks
8 ounces grated cheddar cheese
salt and pepper
Spray a skillet with nonstick cooking spray and saute the onions until they’re soft. Set them aside.
In a medium-sized stock pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour, and whisk the roux constantly for three to five minutes, or until it turns a light golden brown. Pour in the half-and-half and chicken stock and bring it to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Simmer the mixture over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes.
Add the broccoli, onions and carrots to the liquid and simmer over low heat for about 25 minutes. Stir in a pinch of ground nutmeg and the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately with crusty bread.