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20170408_183432

Broccoli & Blue Cheese Soup

I am a massive fan of blue cheese especially Cashel Blue which is made here in Ireland using cow’s milk or their sheep’s milk version called Crozier blue.

My favourite English version is Shropshire blue which is yellow in colour with blue veins running through it.

This soup is fairly straight forward to make and doesn’t have an overpowering blue cheese flavour so people who aren’t very fond of blue cheese may still enjoy it.

You can of course double up the amount of cheese used if you prefer which will give it a much stronger flavour.

Ingredients

1 head of broccoli
150g Cashel blue cheese or similar
50g flour or 2 large potatoes to make it gluten free
1 large onion
2 garlic cloves
1/2 leek
50g butter - not needed if using the potatoes
200ml fresh single cream or 150g creme fraiche
2 vegetable stock cubes or 1 stock pot
2 litres of water
2 tbsp rapeseed oil or similar. Try buy Irish rapeseed oil, it is healthy and you are supporting Irish companies.

Instructions

1
Cut the very tip off the broccoli stalk leaving the rest for the soup. You only want to get rid of the brown bit at the end.
2
Remove all the florets from the broccoli and cut into even sizes. You want them small enough to fit between the blade of your hand blender.
3
Peel and chop the garlic and onions. Then cut the leeks into a similar size and wash well.
4
Heat the oil in a medium pot then add the garlic, leek and onion. Cook for 3 or so minutes until the onion is soft.
5
Add the broccoli and peeled, diced potatoes if using them. Cook for 3 minutes more.
6
Add the butter if using it and allow to melt, then add the flour and stir well and allow to cook out for 2 minutes on a medium heat stirring all the time so it doesn't stick and burn. SKIP THIS STEP IF USING THE POTATOES
7
Add the water and stock cubes or stock pot and blue cheese then stir well. Cover and simmer for 10 add the cream and simmer for 5 minutes.
8
Remove the lid and stir well, then blend with a stick blender until smooth. Add the cream and taste, serve if happy. Add a little salt and pepper if you feel it needs it.
9
BLUE CHEESE CROUTONS - optional.
10
4 slices of white bread
11
50g blue cheese
12
4 tbsp rapeseed oil
13
Cut the bread into large squares or circles. 4 squares per slice or 2 circles both without the crusts.
14
Heat the oil in a pan then when hot add the bread and cook till browned both sides. It takes less than a minute so watch it carefully.
15
Preheat your grill then place slices of the cheese on top of each crouton and grill until melted and slightly browned on top.

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