It's thick and hearty without heavy cream or even whole milk. And it still tastes like a comforting, full soup, that sticks to your insides and gives you that satisfied feeling. Diced russet potatoes lend a bit of starch and oomph to the texture, while blending the soup at the end further thickens it into a creamier state. Big time yum, don't forget a dunker, like this Fluffy White (day) Bread or this Honey Maple Beer Bread.
Notes: Butter is unsalted.
POTATO BROCCOLI CHEDDAR SOUP
Ingredients: 1 tbsp. butter, 1 tbsp. olive oil, 1 medium onion, 1 large carrot, 1 celery stalk, 2 tsp. minced garlic, 2 tbsp. flour, 1 tsp. sea salt, 1 tsp. pepper, 2 medium russet potatoes, 2 1/2 cups chicken broth, 1 cup skim milk, 3 cup broccoli florets, 1 cup grated extra sharp cheddar cheese.
1. Prep the veg: Wash, peel, chop, onion and carrot and dice the celery, keeping everything in similar sizes. Peel and potato and dice, set to the side. Wash broccoli florets and set aside as well.
2. Brown the veggies: Start the soup by heating the butter and olive oil together in a heavy soup pot or medium Dutch oven over medium heat. When melted, add the onion, carrot, and celery all at once along with the garlic. Cook for 5-7 minutes, until the onion is translucent and browned. Sprinkle over the flour, salt, and pepper, then add the potatoes. Continue to cook for about 5 minutes.
3. Add broth and milk: Add the chicken broth and milk, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pot. Bring to a low simmer and cook until to the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Add in the broccoli and cook until tender, another 10 minutes or so. Turn down to low.
4. Finish and serve: Using an immersion blender, or standard blender in batches, blend the soup to a smooth-but-textured consistency. (You can certainly make it entirely smooth, but at that point it will be less pretty...this is super for picky eaters, though.) Heat the soup over medium-low until steaming and nearly simmering, then stir in the cheese to melt. Serve immediately with extra cheese on the side, or your toppings of choice.
Make it dairy-free: Sub the butter for extra olive oil or ghee and replace the milk with your choice of non-dairy milk, or full-fat coconut milk, keeping in mind that coconut milk may curdle at higher temperatures. Replace the cheese with dairy-free melting cheddar, such as by Daiya brand.
Make it vegetarian: Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.
Make it vegan: Do tips 1 and 2 and add 1-2 tbsp. of nutritional yeast with the non-dairy cheese at the end.
Stretch it, baby: If you need to feed a solid 6 people, add 1 extra potato. Bring the chicken stock up to 3 cups and the milk to 1 1/2. The consistency after blending will be slightly less thick, but it won't be thin. Also, give it more cheese, 1 1/2 cups.
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