“Beautiful soup, so rich and green
Waiting in a hot tureen!
Who for such dainties would not stoop?
Soup of the evening, beautiful soup!
Beautiful soup! Who cares for fish
Game, or any other dish?
Who would not give all else for two
Pennyworth of beautiful soup?”
Lewis Carroll, ‘Alice in Wonderland’
Soup just feels like home. It’s not fussy, it brings us together and makes us want to sit and savor as it warms our innermost parts. I love the thought of tossing this and that in a pot, adding water or broth and in just a little while, a delicious fragrance fills your kitchen and you have something warm and savory and nourishing to serve the ones you love.
Thankfully, most soups are fairly easy to prepare and other than the chopping and sauteing, don’t usually take too much fuss to make. My favorite soups are the ones I can make quickly yet are full of deep flavor. Soups able to be the centerpiece of a simple meal. Hearty soups, like Roast Broccoli Cheese soup with Roast Garlic, are perfect as the days grow short and the nights cold.
I’ve made broccoli cheese soup for years but only recently have I discovered how much richer the flavor is when you roast the broccoli and a few cloves of garlic along with it. And it’s a creamy, luscious soup but there’s no added cream to add more calories. And no flour to thicken it. Just lots of broccoli, garlic, cheese and chicken broth. Oh, and it’s completely gluten-free, unless you add croutons.
Other than chopping the broccoli and grating the cheese, this soup comes together in a flash. You can easily put this soup together in less than an hour.
One piece of equipment I highly recommend for this and many other pureed soups, is an Immersion Blender . This is one of my all-time favorite kitchen gadgets, a must-have for me, my kitchen BFF. If you’ve ever tried to puree hot soup in a blender and had the lid fly off and hot soup spray all over your kitchen, this is the gadget for you! It’s so much easier to puree it right in the pot rather than ladling hot soup into a blender or food processor – although it will totally work pureeing it that way.
Beautiful veggies, all roasted and ready to be soup!
Roast Broccoli Cheese Soup with Roast Garlic
- Serves 4
- 1 large head organic broccoli
- 1 large onion
- 10 cloves garlic
- 4 cups organic chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 2 cups grated cheddar cheese
- 4 tablespoons olive, grape seed or coconut oil, divided
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Peel broccoli stem and chop and cut the top into florets. I cut off about 2 inches of the stem and then I chop the rest for the soup.
- Cut onion into slices, about ¼ inch thick.
- Put the broccoli and the onion on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 3 tablespoons of the oil, some salt and a few grindings of fresh pepper.
- Add 5 whole cloves of garlic, unpeeled.
- Roast the broccoli, onions and garlic for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, peel and roughly chop 5 garlic cloves. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large saucepan and saute the garlic for 1 minute.
- When the broccoli/onion mixture is done, remove from the oven and let cool until you can handle the garlic. Snip one end off of each clove and squeeze onto the broccoli.
- Pour all the vegetables into your saucepan. Add the chicken broth and the thyme. Simmer on medium-low for 20 minutes.
- Puree the soup with an immersion blender or in your blender or food processor.
- Add the grated cheese.
- Taste the soup and add more cheese if you need to. Check the seasonings and add salt and pepper if necessary. Cheese usually has a good amount of salt so definitely taste first.
- If you don’t have an immersion blender, ladle your soup into your blender or food processor in batches. Only fill it about half way. Blend till pureed, holding the lid firmly with a kitchen towel because the heat can build up and make it fly off. You can do this in 2 batches.
- I really like to use a good, sharp cheddar with this soup but if you don’t have any on hand, try Monterey Jack or Havarti. You can even use Swiss or Jarlsberg if you like.
- This recipe is equally delicious with cauliflower in place of the broccoli. Try adding a little curry powder for a different twist.
- To keep this completely vegetarian, use vegetable broth in place of the chicken broth.
- I like to make homemade croutons to go with this. Or, a nice loaf of crusty bread and a big tossed salad. Enjoy!