Broccoli and Potato Soup

There are several variations to broccoli soup, and this is one of easiest. This is what you want on a cold winter night –  a hot, comforting, wholesome bowl of soup. Plus it’s easy to make, you need just a few ingredients that are probably in your fridge. 

Ingredients
serves 4-6

3 tbsp butter

2 serrano chillies, roughly chopped
5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped
3 small yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 small heads of broccoli
8 cups vegetable stock (low sodium)
1 cup half and half
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tsp salt
 a pinch of crushed red pepper for garnish (optional)

Method
In a heavy bottomed pot, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add the serrano, garlic, cumin and coriander powders. Sauté for 2 minutes.

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 Add the chopped onions and cook for another 6-7 minutes until the onions have softened and turn translucent. 

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 Add the chopped potatoes with one tsp salt. Cook for 2-3 minutes.

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 Pour in four cups of vegetable broth and bring this mixture to a boil. Drop the heat to low and cover. Simmer for 20 minutes.

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In the meanwhile, tear the broccoli head into florets. Chop off any tough stems. The tender parts of the stems can stay on given they are going into a soup and will cook through. Roughly chop the florets into even sized pieces. Make sure the pieces are not too small, when cooked this needs to be a bit chunky and offer some texture to the soup.

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Uncover the onion potato mixture and check for doneness. Use the stirring spoon and try to mash a piece of potato, it should easily break apart and be completely cooked through and very soft.  Cook for additional 5 minutes if you aren’t there yet. Use a hand blender and make this into a smooth puree.

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Add the chopped broccoli and the remaining tsp of salt, along with the remaining 4 cups of vegetable broth.

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Cover and cook on low heat for another 20 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender.

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Add the half and half and the shredded mozzarella. Mix well, and let simmer together for another 2-3 minutes.

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Remove from heat, serve with your favorite bread. Optionally, you can garnish with some crushed red peppers for some additional heat.

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