A little while ago I had mentioned that I made some Broccoli Cheddar Soup and some Pretzel Bread, and wanted to share with you since they turned out so yummy. The Pretzel Bread was found when I was perusing around this cute blog that I recently stumbled upon, The Apron Archives (isn’t that the cutest name?). I made sure to pin it so I wouldn’t forget about it. Turns out I couldn’t stop thinking about it and needed to try making some soon. So I made it to go with a Broccoli Cheddar Soup the other weekend, and the two made for many heart-warming meals.
The bread is a great one for dipping into soups and making sandwiches with. I think what I like most about it is that it’s a pretty quick and easy homemade bread to make. Where most homemade breads are nearly an all day process, the process for Pretzel Bread takes only a few hours. (Your active working time with it is only a fraction of that three hours). It was fun to make too, as there’s a little excitement when you get to drop your dough into the pot of boiling water. Now I want to try making pretzels soon. =)
::Broccoli Cheddar Soup::
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
2-3 leeks, quarter lengthwise, rinse, then chop
4 garlic cloves, minced
6-ish potatoes, preferably yukon golds, diced
2 large heads broccoli, chopped
1 qt. chicken stock
6-ish c. whole milk
1-2 T fresh parsley and thyme, chopped
grated cheddar cheese
In a hot pot over med-high heat, sauté onions until translucent, about 4-5 min. Add in leeks and garlic and saute another 4-5 min. Add in the potatoes and broccoli, a pinch of s+p, and let cook and steam until they’re a little tender, about 7 min., stirring frequently. Sprinkle in the flour, stir and cook for a few minutes to cook out the raw flour flavor. Pour in chicken stock and let cook until hot, then stir in whole milk. Let simmer until the potatoes and broccoli are tender enough to eat and the soup has thickened a little. Ladle about a third of the soup into a blender and puree. Pour back into pot. If you prefer a completely creamy and smooth soup, use an immersion blender, take the pot off the heat and puree the soup until smooth. (For this soup, my hubby and I prefer the chunks of veggies to bite into, so I puree just some of the soup to make it a little more creamy). Sprinkle in the fresh herbs, season with salt and pepper to taste. To serve, garnish with a big pinch of cheddar cheese and enjoy.
I love adding the cheese to the soup as it’s dished up and let it melt in the bowl, as I think the cheese flavor just sort of disappears when added into the big hot soup pot. This is my kind of dinner (and lunch) for all the cold winter days we’re having. Enjoy!