Creamy Broccoli and Cheese Soup

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Well, well.  Mother Nature sure did throw a curve ball our way these past couple days.  Chilly and rainy weather?  It feels more like Winter than Spring! I guess it was payback for the unseasonably warm temps we had back in March. 

I guess we’re lucky we didn’t get the snow that was falling just an hours drive away.

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In case you had also had this cold, wet weather, or jsut want some comfort food, I have one more warm comforting soup recipe for you. 

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Does anyone else out there love Panera like I do?  No matter what my mood, I can always find something to suit it at Panera. 

Most of the time, what suites me is their Broccoli and Cheese soup.  Isn’t that soup the best?

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I won’t claim my version to be quite as tasty, but it is a delicious stand in.  It is thick and creamy, without using any cream.  The tender broccoli get coated with the creamy, cheesy soup and the sweet carrots add an extra pop of flavor. 

While I sure hope summer is on its way sooner than later, be sure to try this soup on your next rainy, chilly day!

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 Creamy Broccoli and Cheese Soup

Makes 10 servings

Ingredients

  • 5 cups chopped broccoli florets and stems
  • 2 large stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 4 cups non fat milk
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions

  1. Place broccoli in a microwave safe bowl.  Cover and microwave for 3 minutes.  Stir , recover and microwave an additional 3 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a large soup pot over medium heat. Saute celery, carrots and onion in olive oil until soft, but not brown (about 5 minutes.)
  3. Add butter to sautéed vegetables.
  4. When butter has melted, add flour.  Stir to coat vegetables.  Cook for 1 minute.
  5. Slowly add stock to vegetables, stirring well to combine.
  6. Add in cooked broccoli.  Bring this mixture to a boil.
  7. Pour in milk. Heat the soup until it is simmering and simmer for 5 minutes.
  8. Turn off the heat, and add the cheese.  Stir well to combine. 
  9. When the cheese has melted, the soup is ready to serve.

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