Monday, December 19, 2011

Broccoli Cheese Soup

My favorite thing to order at Panera bread is their Broccoli Cheese soup in a bread bowl. But for some reason I have never ventured to make it myself at home! I know, it seems like such an easy thing to make, but sometimes when you enjoy something in a restaurant, you just don't think to make it at home!! Kind of makes it special when you order it when you go out!! Well, when I saw that Pioneer Woman made this soup, it looked so good and I just had to try to make it!! And it seriously is so easy to make!!
You don't need that many ingredients, and it doesn't take that long on the stove top!!

Broccoli Cheese Soup
Pioneer Woman

1 whole onion, diced
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1/3 cup flour
4 cups whole milk
2 cups half and half
4 heads of broccoli, cut into florets
1 pinch nutmeg
3 cups cheese (mild cheddar, sharp cheddar, jack, etc.)
small dash of salt, more if needed
freshly ground black pepper
splash of chicken broth if needed for thinning

1. Melt the butter in the pot over medium heat, and then add the onions. Cook the onions for about 3 to 4 minutes, and then add the flour over the top. Stir to combine and cook for 1 minute or so; then pour in the milk and the half and half. Add nutmeg, then add broccoli, a small dash of salt, and plenty of black pepper.

2. Cover and reduce heat to low; simmer for 20 to 30 minutes or until the broccoli is tender. Stir in cheese and allow to melt.

3. Taste seasonings and adjust if needed. Then either serve as is, or mash it with a potato masher or transfer to a blender and puree in 2 batches until smooth. If putting it into a blender, you may need to thin it with a little chicken broth.

It's thicker than it looks! Obviously, I added mine to the blender to puree it!! Delicious!

On Pioneer Woman's website, she also shows how you can make cute little bread bowls out of dinner rolls, and of course she has way better pictures than me that will make you want to drool for this soup!! It's perfect for these cold, winter days, and I also love making things like this ahead of time and sticking them in the crockpot so dinner is ready and I'm not rushing to get it made right when everyone is starving!!


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