Monday, October 15, 2012

Cheezy Broccoli Soup with Peppered Croutons

Soup season is in full effect! Broccoli cheese is one of my favorites and this vegan version has all the flavor but lacks all the fat from the traditional dairy version. Add more broth and serve as a chunky soup or prepare as directed and blend into a creamy puree.

Savory broccoli soup swirled with homemade cheese sauce, sunflower seeds, fresh oregano and peppered croutons.

Cheeze Sauce
2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
2 tbl all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbl dijon mustard
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp creole seasoning

Whisk together the olive oil and flour in a small saute pan and cook for 1 minutes. Slowly stream in the almond milk while whisking. Season with mustard, salt, garlic, onion, pepper and creole seasoning. Cook while whisking over medium heat until it boils. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 3-5 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Cheese Broccoli Soup
2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, minced
1 celery stalk, minced
1 large russet potato, peeled, small dice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large head of broccoli, stems removed, roughly chopped
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 tbl dried rosemary
1 tsp creole seasoning, plus more for garnish
2 cups vegetable broth
1 recipe cheeze sauce
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds, for garnish
 fresh oregano leaves, for garnish
vegan cheddar cheese, for garnish

Saute the onion and celery in olive oil until the onion starts to soften, 5 minutes. Add the potatoes and garlic and cook 5 minutes more. Add the broccoli, nutritional yeast, rosemary, creole seasoning and vegetable broth. Simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes until the potato is completely cooked through an the broccoli is tender.
Transfer to a blender and blend to your desired consistency. I like it mostly pureed with a few chunks.
Bring back to the pot and add 3/4ths of the cheese sauce. Stir to combine and taste to season.
Garnish the soup with a drizzle of the remaining cheese sauce,  a dash of creole seasoning, sunflower seeds, oregano and shredded cheese.

Peppered Croutons
2 slices of seed bread, crust removed, medium dice
2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder

Toss the bread with olive oil, pepper, salt and garlic and toast in a saute pan until golden brown and crusty.

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