Thursday, October 21, 2010

week 22 of plowshare produce

As a preface, we didn't take everything this week because 1) we still had plenty leftover from last week, 2) we are going to be out of town this weekend, and 3) we know it'll go to a good home (leftovers are donated to neighbors/others who will appreciate the fresh veggies!!)

This Week’s Veggies: potatoes or sweet potatoes, onions and garlic, carrots, broccoli, rutabagas, cabbage, kale or chard, spinach or lettuce or mizuna/arugula bunches, peppers, herbs, hot peppers   

I've been wanting to make a cheddar-broccoli soup, after seeing the linked post by one of my friends in Nebrasksa. But, I also knew we had a lot of veggies to get through, so I made up my own, with hers as inspiration. We'll call it, Hearty Broccoli Soup.

Hearty Broccoli Soup
* 1 large onion, diced
* 1 head of broccoli, diced
* 4 med potatoes, diced
* 4 med turnips, diced
* ~3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
* 1 cup skim milk
* 2 cups shredded cheese (I used 1 cup shredded yellow cheddar and 1 cup shredded sharp white cheddar)

In a large pot, saute onion until tender (in water or oil). Add diced veggies. Add enough broth to just cover veggies, cover pot with a lid and bring to a boil. Cook until all veggies are fork-tender. Remove pan from heat and puree veggie mixture. I did this in the blender in two batches, adding 1 cup of milk as the liquid for the first batch, and the vegetable broth for the second. If you're lucky enough to have a hand mixer - that would probably be much easier! Just add the milk to the pot, or omit milk and add enough broth to get the texture you prefer. Once the mixture is well blended, return pot to medium heat and stir in the cheese. I am generally not a fan of sharp cheeses, but recommend sharp cheddar for this soup because you'll get more "bang for your buck" with respect to the cheese-to-soup-flavor (i.e. more cheesy flavor, less fat). Using the potatoes also gives this soup a rich, hearty flavor, without the cream, and blends for a thick texture quite nicely without the butter/flour combo generally used. 

I also sliced a lot of the onions we had, caramelized them, mixed in a can of Yuengling Black and Tan and added some brauts that Scott seared on the grill. I actually didn't eat any of these, but our friends who came over seemed to enjoy them. :)

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