Back on day one, someone asked me about the soup. “Did you make the stock?” No. “Did you grate the parmesan?” No. “Were the beans from a can?” Sigh. Yes.
A lot of the fun of cooking for me comes from taking things in their most basic form and making them into something delicious. I bake all my own bread. My pumpkin pie is made from an actual pumpkin. I can pickles, jam and vegetables in the summertime to have on hand year round. My eggs come from chickens ranging in my back yard.
But, you know, sometimes it’s enough to know I can do those things. I can make chicken stock and fill my freezer. I can use dried beans in my soup (and generally do).
That said, those boxes of stock from the grocery store will do when I don’t have any fresh on hand. A can of beans is just fine now and again and, for pity’s sake, until I learn to make parmesan cheese, pre-grated is as good as anything else.
But all things being equal, it’s still more fun to do things from scratch.
Not a whole lot to this recipe really. But, dang it, I roasted these peppers and I’m a better man for it. Just the same, there is still a jar from BJ’s in my pantry. And I’ll bet I use it before the month is up.
Incredibly flavorful and satisfying, this soup is greater than the sum of its parts and goes from empty pot to dinner on the table in less than half an hour. Or an hour and a half if you roast your own peppers. Hmm. Perhaps next summer I’ll can some.
2 c Chicken Stock
2 c Broccoli Florets, chopped
1/2 c Havarti Cheese, shredded
1/3 c Roasted Red Peppers, cut into matchsticks
1/4 tsp White Pepper
1/4 tsp Paprika
1/3 c Heavy Cream
Bring stock to a boil and add broccoli. When broccoli is soft (5 minutes or so), reduce to simmer and puree with stick blender.
Add havarti, peppers and spices and let simmer another 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
Stir in cream and simmer 2 more minutes then remove from heat.
Let rest 5 minutes before serving.
Originally: Havarti Broccoli with Roasted Red Peppers