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Broccoli Cheese Soup

1 bunch broccoli, about 1 1/4 pounds, washed and trimmed
2 cups sliced onions
5 tbsp butter or margarine
7 cups chicken broth, divided
1 tsp dried leaf oregano, crumbled
1/4 cup flour
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/8 tsp pepper
1 cup milk
2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

1. Cut florets off broccoli and divide into small sections.
2. Simmer in lightly salted water for 2 minutes; drain and immerse in cold water to stop cooking; then set aside.
3. Cut stalks into small pieces; place in a large saucepan. Add sliced onions and 3 tablespoons of butter to saucepan; sauté over medium low heat for 5 minutes.
4. Add 3 cups chicken broth and oregano to the saucepan; simmer 20 to 30 minutes.
5. Carefully process hot mixture in batches in a blender until smooth.
6. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in saucepan; stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, until smooth and bubbly.
7. Stir in mustard and pepper. Gradually stir in processed mixture and remaining 4 cups of chicken broth.
8. Continue to cook, stirring, until mixture begins to bubble. Add milk and cheese; stir until smooth and cheese is melted. Add remaining broccoli florets and heat through. Broccoli cheese soup serves 8.

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