Though I am not the biggest fan of snowy, icy weather–that is literally just accumulating outside my door at this very moment, I am quite fond of the comfort foods that make up winter eats. Most people think that comfort food equals lots of fat, sugar, and calories. I don’t think it has to. Comfort food is all about flavors that are familiar and welcoming, and oftentimes that can be accomplished with less of the “bad” stuff when combined with the herbs and other seasonings or offset by loads of vegetables. Soups are one of my favorite ways to enjoy my favorite “comfort foods” and flavors without sacrificing nutrition. They are also a great way to warm up on cold nights. Here are links to two of my favorite soups that I have previously shared on my blog… as well as a new one for today.
Lasagna Soup… spinach, tomatoes, beef, noodles, and plenty of cheese to make things happy! This is a must make.
Turkey, Black Bean, and Sweet Potato Chili… a new take on an old classic.
And last but not least, Cream of Broccoli Soup with Cheese. This soup does not disappoint. It is plenty creamy and cheesy to feel indulgent, but is also filling without feeling heavy, thanks to the use of fresh broccoli, skim milk, and flavorful Swiss cheese.
Cream of Broccoli Soup with Cheese [from Rosemary Perry, Lafayette Journal and Courier]
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 2 medium heads fresh broccoli, chopped [can also substitute 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen chopped broccoli]
- 1 tablespoon onion, minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup flour
- generous amount coarse ground black pepper
- 2 cups skim milk
- 1 cup cubed Swiss cheese
Place chicken broth, broccoli, onion, and bay leaf in 3 quart saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Simmer, covered, for 5 minutes or until broccoli reaches desired tenderness. [I like to leave it with a little bit of bite so that the rest of the cooking doesn't make it mushy.]
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt butter then stir in flour and pepper. Cook for 1 minute, always stirring. Gradually add milk, always stirring to make a smooth sauce. Remove from heat.
Remove bay leaf from broth and slowly stir sauce into broth. Add cubed cheese. Heat gently on low until cheese melts.
Time: 30 minutes.
Yield: 4-6 servings.
Sarah began blogging at The Pajama Chef in order to chronicle her adventures in and love of cooking and baking. Sarah is currently a graduate student at Indiana University working towards a Master of Library Science and a Master of Arts in African Studies. Sarah’s efforts in the kitchen would not be possible without the assistance of her husband, Ben, and his stellar dish-washing and sous-chef skills. Sarah and Ben were married in May 2009 and enjoy running, reading, involvement in a local church, and spoiling their kitty, Sheba. You can also find Sarah on Pinterest.