After 33 years of marriage my husband occasionally gets irritated with me (ok, maybe it's more than occasionally!) One of his irritations is that I get bored with cooking the same things. I like to try new foods, techniques, variations of a familiar recipe or new recipes. He likes the tried and true and likes some things on a regular rotation. The other night he requested cream of broccoli soup. My first thought was that I had made it a few months ago. But I played good wife that night and made it for him. I must admit our dinner was good.
This is a great soup, very creamy as the name implies. I like the addition of the cream, it makes for a thicker, richer soup, but if you're counting calories whole milk can easily be substituted. Sometimes I will add some shredded cheddar cheese before serving or some crumbled bacon. It's an easy and quick soup to put together, I don't know why I don't make it more often (but don't tell my husband I said that!)
I have an immersion blender and use it to puree the soup. I have had many hot soup/blender blow ups in my kitchen and the immersion blender is a nice remedy for that problem! We like our soup a little chunky so I don't blend it to a smooth puree.
Cream of Broccoli Soup
2 tablespoon butter
1/2 onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
3 cups chicken broth
8 cups broccoli florets
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a medium-sized stock pot, and saute onion and celery until tender. Add broccoli and broth, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
Pour the soup into a blender, filling the pitcher no more than halfway full. Hold down the lid of the blender with a folded kitchen towel, and carefully start the blender, using a few quick pulses to get the soup moving before leaving it on to puree. Puree in batches until smooth and pour back into stock pot. Alternately, you can use a stick blender and puree the soup right in the cooking pot.
In small saucepan, over medium-heat melt 3 tablespoons butter, stir in flour and add milk/cream (or substitute with 2 cups half & half). Stir until thick and bubbly, and add to soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.