But like, with gruyere.
Would you believe I’ve never made broccoli cheese soup before? Let me rephrase that. I made it once before this post which led to remaking it for this post but before this post I’d never made broccoli cheese soup before. (!)
I know, I can’t believe it either.
And you’ll never guess where the inspo came from. I was reading. Of course I was reading. (<–said like Scuttle in The Little Mermaid, “I was flying! Of course I was flying.”) I was reading Our Little Lies (soooo good), and the main character mom is really into cooking, so a lot of her inner dialogue is wrapped around these lavish dinners that she’s constantly cooking to impress her husband (you’ll hate him) and his response to it all. Well she described this broccoli cheese soup that makes on lazy Saturday evenings in the summer. She’ll bake fresh bread in the afternoon and make the soup right after, but she’ll use a good pungent Stilton cheese, which her husband (you’ll seriously hate him) thought was too rich. But the way she described it was so soothing and lovely and I just had to make it.
So here we are. But with Gruyere instead of Stilton. And all is well.
All simple stuff. And you really don’t need much broccoli. I got away with a big head like this, but two smaller crowns also work perfectly.
Are you so excited yet?
If you’ve been ignoring your beloved food processor, now’s its time to shine. Because you’ll pulse the florets just long enough to turn them into crumbles. Like gravel-y crumbles. Bigger chunks here, smaller there. You know. That. ^^
I wanted to build depth from the get-go, so 33 garlic cloves (just kiddiiiiiiiing, only 4) and a smallish white onion get a hefty sauté in butter. You don’t really need to caramelize the onion (although if you WANT to that would marvelous flavor omg). Get it sweaty and browned and softened and fragrant. There you go.
Now you’ll add the flour and whisk it until it becomes pasty, which is quick. After about 20 seconds you’ll slowly start adding the milk, keeping that wrist going, watching it come together into a seductive sauce right before your eyes.
But we’re not here for sauce. We’re here for soup. Keep adding the milk, the stock, then the cheese. Whisk it over a medium heat until allllll that nutty cheese is melted and smooth. Once you have a creamy soup before your eyes, add the broccoli crumbles. NOW WE’RE AT IT. Let that simmer lightly for 5-10 minutes, to let the broccoli cook and soften in the soup. And as always, salt that mother.
Hello, okay yes.
Oh you see that parmesan in the bottom right corner? So do I. Let’s fix that.
We do remember that mama said knock you out, right?
This is simple comfort at its absolute finest. I am telling you right now, that gruyere flavor has a richness and a depth unlike any regular cheddar. Earthy, nutty, bold, woodsy in a way.
And I won’t be mad at you if you need to garnish with tiny adorable broccoli florets and a drizzle of your best olive oil.
And did you honestly think I’d forgotten about the freshly baked bread? Girlfriend, please.
I’m already so pumped for you.
- 2 Tbs. butter
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped or minced
- 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 6 oz grated gruyere cheese
- 1 medium-to-large broccoli head, pulsed in a food processor until chopped and crumbly (save a few small florets for garnish)
- Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- Coarse salt
- Crusty bread, for dunking! (Totally optional, but you know what to do)
- Heat the butter in a medium pot over medium high. Add the sliced onion and sauté about five minutes, until it begins to really wilt and brown in places. Add the garlic and go another minute, until the garlic is fragrant. Season with a pinch of salt.
- Add the flour and stir for a few seconds, as it soaks up the aromatics and becomes thick. Slowly add the milk, a half cup at a time, whisking as you go. Add the chicken stock and stir another few seconds. Then add the grated gruyere and keep whisking as the cheese melts and the soup thickens. Finally, add the broccoli crumbles along with a good pinch of salt. Cook this about five minutes, letting the broccoli become tender in the soup. Now taste it. What do we need? More salt? Do what you need to do.
- Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with a few tiny broccoli florets, parmesan cheese and maybe a drizzle of your best olive oil. And don’t forget that crusty bread for dipping. You’re no animal.
- Serves 4 small bowls.
Lazy summer Saturday evening soup suppah? Here for it.
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