Well, we’ve started the sick season in our neck of the woods. I miss the Vitamin D power that we get in the summer time. So since my second oldest child was sick all last week, I made soup a couple of times. Now, she only had a bad cold but the drainage made her stomach upset, so I tried to make food that she liked and that would be easier on the stomach. She happens to love broccoli, so I decided to make my mom’s cream of broccoli soup recipe.
It is a soup recipe that is quite easy to prepare, and I like to make it with a good ham stock. The secret to a good soup is a good stock. For me, that means that I make my potato, bean, pea, and broccoli soups with a flavorful ham stock. I think it adds so much more flavor than chicken stock (or maybe I just don’t know how to make a great, flavorful chicken stock.)
I also get two soups out of every ham I make. When I bake a ham, I pour 1/2″ to an 1″ of water in the bottom of the pan, and I save that water that now has all the drippings for one broth. I just pour it in a bowl and freeze it until I want to make soup. Then I cut almost all of the ham off of the bone. I wrap the bone up in aluminum foil and freeze it. When I need to use the bone for soup, I take it out of the freezer, put in a pan of water and cook it for a while to get another ham broth. The broth made out of drippings makes a more flavorful broth than the broth made from the ham bone. The nice thing about freezing the broth is that all the fat rises to the top, and it can be removed and thrown away before making your soup!
I love that this soup can be made quickly. It takes only as long as it takes to cook the soup and then to add the cream mixture! I do cheat and use my food processor for the broccoli and onions. A couple of my kids don’t like broccoli at all–and everyone is required to eat a little as what I make for dinner. But I do take pity on them and don’t have big chunks of broccoli. So some of the broccoli is very finely chopped, and I pulsed some of the other broccoli so that there would be a little bit bigger pieces of broccoli. After the soup is made, you can grate some cheese on top if desired; although we enjoy it without the cheese.
Here’s the recipe!
- 5 cups ham broth or chicken
- 1/2 pound chopped broccoli
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 6 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups milk
Add broccoli and onion to broth.
Cook until tender--about 20 minutes.
In a separate pan, melt the butter.
Add flour. Cook over low heat for two minutes.
Stir in milk. Cook for a few minutes until mixture begins to thicken. Add to broth.
Cook, stir, and season to taste.
Makes 1/2 gallon.
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