(Adapted from The Pioneer Woman’s Broccoli Cheese Soup)
- 1 whole medium Onion, Diced
- 1 stick Butter
- ⅓ cup Flour
- 4 cups Whole Milk
- 2 cups Half-and-half (can also use 1 cup heavy cream + 1 cup half and half)
- 2 heads Broccoli Cut Into Florets
- 1 small bunch carrots, cut into rounds
- 5-6 fist sized white potatoes, cut into small chunks
- 1 pinch Nutmeg (I used freshly grated)
- 3 cups Grated Cheese (I used 2 cups Monterey Jack and 1 cup Sharp Cheddar)
- Small Dash Of Salt (taste after adding cheese to see if more salt is needed)
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- Pinch cayenne (be careful – a little goes a long way)
- Chicken Broth If Needed For Thinning
- 1 package mushrooms (use your favorite – I used baby portobellos), sliced
- 1/2 stick butter (for the mushrooms)
Melt butter in a pot over medium heat, then add the onions. Cook the onions for 3 to 4 minutes. Dice carrots and add to onion mixture. Cook 3-4 more minutes, then sprinkle flour over top.
Stir to combine and cook for 1 minute or so, then pour in milk and half-and-half. Add nutmeg.
Chop broccoli and potatoes and add to milk mixture. Add a small dash of salt, and plenty of black pepper.
Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender.
You can leave the soup chunky, mash it with a potato masher, or transfer to a blender in two batches and puree completely. (If you puree it in a blender, return it to the heat and allow to heat up. Splash in chicken broth if needed for thinning.)
I puree about half of the soup in 2 batches. On the last batch I add 1 cup of chicken broth (your own homemade is best, but a great alternative is Better Than Bouillon’s Chicken Base – 1tsp to 1 cup water). After I’ve poured this back into the soup, I run 1/4 cup of white wine through the blender and pour it in as well.
Stir in cheese and allow to melt.
While cheese is melting – brown butter and begin to saute mushrooms.
While mushrooms are on saute, taste soup and adjust seasoning if necessary.
Just before serving, add the mushrooms and stir well.