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Last days of summer with broccoli soup

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The evenings are becoming chillier, summer is slowly fading away, but I try to enjoy the benefits of this late summer. This is when the garden I’ve mended since spring is at its best.

Tomatoes are ripe, broccoli is sprouting a new stem every day and zucchinis are growing too fast to handle.

So I came up with simple recipes that warm the chilly nights and use the homegrown veggies that I love so. Every time I cook something from my garden it reminds me that one year ago I was stuck in a crowded city, shopping only from the supermarket and eating vegetables that had traveled more than me in my entire lifetime. Not everyone is as lucky as I am to eat what one has grown, but shopping locally can be just as fun. In my last days in the big city I got to know some farmers that traveled a long way to get to sell at the local market.

Why am I blabbering about shopping locally? Well because this broccoli soup is so simple, that you need the best produce to start it with. And because shopping locally is always best.

broccoli_soup

What do you need?

2-3 stems of fresh broccoli

1 spoon of butter

1 onion

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Homemade croutons

How do you make it?

Thoroughly wash and cut the flowers off the stem of the broccoli. The stem is too hard and should be left aside, but if you really want to be green you can add it with the flowers. That’s what I always do.

Bring some water to boil. Add salt. Put the flowers in the water; leave it to boil for 4 to 5 minutes. As with the Broccoli and blue cheese salad recipe, this is the best way to cook broccoli, because it keeps all the flavors and benefits alive and kicking. The best way to tell if the broccoli is ready is to cut one with a knife, while it’s still boiling. If the knife cuts easily it’s ready.

Meanwhile cut the onion and melt the butter in a pan. Saute the onion until it is translucent. This little trick is meant to enrich the flavor of the soup and help you avoid adding cream, flour or other tricks for the soup to be creamy and tasty.

Keep the water in which you boiled your broccoli. That is where all the good stuff goes.

All you have to do now it put the broccoli and onion in a blender, fill it a bit more than half with the hot water, and let the blender do its magic. Pulse it at first and then let it blend into a creamy wonder.

Taste it, add salt and pepper to taste and blend again.

Homemade croutons

I recommend serving this soup with homemade croutons. That means cutting some old bread into cubes, putting it into a bowl, sprinkling it with some olive oil and chili powder and mixing it well. Then, just preheat the oven, get a baking tray, line it with parchment paper and spread the cubes on it. Leave it in the oven for 10 minutes, shaking the tray halfway as to get them golden on all sides.

Enjoy!


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