July 28, 2015

Broccoli Cheese Soup

Lesson of the Week: Grocery stores apparently don't like it
when you randomly take pictures of their produce.
Let's face it. Cheese is awesome. If we could, we'd all be sitting around eating whole blocks of it. But for some reason "society"says we can't do that and still be elected to government office. Thanks Obama. So the question becomes, how do we get all of that cheesy goodness in us without the social stigma of eating cheese off of our gross bellies like some sort of cheese beaver. The answer is Broccoli Cheese Soup. It's got all of the cheesy creamy awesomeness, and the broccoli gives it the street cred. People hear broccoli and they think "that's probably being eaten by an upstanding member of the community who's never coined a phrase as ridiculous as 'cheese beavers.'"


3 heads of Fresh Broccoli
5 cups Whole Milk
8 oz Cheddar Cheese
4 oz Pepper Jack Cheese
1 stick Butter
1/3 cup Flour
1 large Onion
2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Black Pepper
1/4 tsp dried Thyme
An average human sized pinch of Nutmeg

The first thing you're gonna need to do is diet. And maybe buy a gym membership that you'll use twice ever. Because this soup is legit. And with legit-ness, comes the calories. And unless you preemptively drop some weight, the calories will bring the shame. Once you've got that taken care of, it's time to cut your Broccoli down to size. It seems intimidating, like a little magical shrub of doom; but it's not so bad. Turn the broccoli upside down, and cut off the florettes at roughly a 45 degree angle (Protip: for best results, wash the damn broccoli first). For a video shot on the world's shakiest camera explaining this process in an unnecessarily complicated way, check this out. Regardless, cut the last inch off of the stalk, and thinly slice the rest if it.

Now it's time for the familiar parts, that we've hopefully done before. Chop an onion. Don't get fancy. The soup won't care if you chop the onion more beautifully than me. The soup will mock you for your wasted time and effort on what's going to be a blended soup. And so will I. Melt your butter over medium heat, and sauté your onion in it for about 5 minutes. Then whisk in your flour, essentially making an onion roux, which isn't too dissimilar from the roux we made for our bechamel sauce which we used in our Mac and Cheese (Hooray for self-promotion! And...a long list of recipes to reference from having done this blog for close to a year). Fully incorporate your flour, and let it cook down for a minute or so before slowly adding in your milk, whisking like a crazy VA vet chef who can only find solace in whisking. And...maybe a couple other things. Add in your Salt, Pepper, Thyme, and Nutmeg, and heat it over medium heat, being careful not to bring it to a boil. Add in the cheese in small batches. Stir it and make sure it fully incorporates before you add in the next batch.
The creaminess is matched only by the deliciousness. And

Now it's time to toss your chopped broccoli into the mix. Make sure it's completely submerged, cover the pot, and turn it down to low. Not "low, but I still kind of want this to boil" low, but "all the damn way down" low. Cook your broccoli all up in there for about an hour, until it's tender. Then grab your handy Electric Whirry Stick of Violent Cookery (or EWSVIC), and blend the crap out of it until you reach your desired consistency. I personally like a smooth and creamy soup, but if you like it a little chunkier, so be it. As long as we're consuming way too much cheese, preferably all in one sitting, I'm happy.

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