Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Italian Style Broccoli Cheese Soup

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, room temperature
2 pounds fresh broccoli, stems and florets separated and chopped into bite-size pieces , chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon chopped parsley and fresh tarragon
6 1/2 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth
1 cup whipping cream
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 cups (packed) grated Fontina Cheese, provolone, mozzarella cheese or a blend of all three

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in heavy medium pot over medium-high heat saute garlic two minutes. Add broccoli stems. Add stock; bring to boil. Simmer uncovered until broccoli is tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in cream.

Mix remaining 3 tablespoons butter with flour in small bowl to make paste. Whisk paste into soup. Add broccoli florets except for 1 cup pulsed in food processor, add. Simmer until soup thickens and florets are tender, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Cool slightly, then refrigerate uncovered until cold. Cover and keep refrigerated. Heat to a warm simmer then preheat  oven broiler. Place 6 ovenproof soup bowls on baking sheet. Divide soup among bowls. Sprinkle 1/3 cup cheese over each. Broil until cheese melts and bubbles around edges, about 4 minutes.  Serve buttered bread crumbs with garlic croutons.
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