Broccoli Cheddar Soup

There is something comforting about broccoli soup. This version is thickened with the cheese, but there is no added milk or cream, so it still has a lightness to it. I serve this for dinner with bread or rolls and a salad, but it would work well for a soup course, too. It is loosely based on a broccoli soup from a Williams-Sonoma cookbook, but I can’t for the life of me remember which one.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup
Serves 4 as a main course and 6-8 as a starter

1 yellow or white onion
2 T olive oil
1.25 pounds broccoli
1/4 C flour
5 C chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 t thyme, dried
1 T lemon juice
1.25 C cheddar cheese, grated
salt and white pepper to taste

  1. Peel onion and roughly chop.
  2. In a large sauce pan, heat up olive oil and saute onion for about 10 minutes until onions are soft and translucent. I like to sprinkle the onions with a smidgen of salt while they are sauteing.
  3. While the onions are cooking, chop and rinse broccoli. The soup is going to be pureed, so a rough chop is fine, but peel the thicker stems.
  4. When onions are finished, add the flour and cook for an additional minute, stirring well.
  5. Add 1 cup of the stock, mixing well to blend with the floury onions. When the liquid is smooth, add the rest of the stock, lemon juice and thyme.
  6. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to keep the soup at a simmer for 10 minutes or until broccoli is tender.
  7. Turn of the heat.
  8. Puree the soup. If using an immersion blender, puree the soup directly in the pan. Or, if using a blender or food processor, puree in batches.
  9. Return the soup to the pan, if needed.
  10. Over slow heat, add 1 C of the grated cheese, 1/4 C at a time, whisking well to incorporate and melt the cheese into the soup.
  11. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  12. Put in bowls and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
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