chilly nights, warm bowls

Here in CT, it seems we breezed right by those lovely warm early fall days and went straight to chilly. So when I received my first issue of Food Network magazine (a gift from a fabulous foodie friend), I wanted to make the cover recipe: Broccoli-Cheddar Soup.

This recipe is very simple, with the hardest work being to shred the cheese. I don’t use pre-shredded cheese in this recipe because the additive that is used to keep the cheese from clumping tends to dry out the cheese and result in a less creamy consistency in soup and pizzas.

I’ve made my share of cheesy potato soups, but what intrigued me with these ingredients were the sweet potatoes. These brightly hued tubers added a warm color and substantial texture to the cheese soup. And don’t miss the croutons. I diced the ends of some bread I had saved in the freezer for just this purpose. A little drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt, then I ran them quickly under the broiler.

The result of this recipe may not please everyone, as noted in the comments on the website. The base is less cheesy and more of a potato feel, which we happen to enjoy. Cheese soups tend to be too rich for hubby and me, but this was a good balance. I didn’t feel like I needed to detox after consuming a couple of bowls full. The flavor was lacking, so I added Adobo seasoning, which has sort of a salty, slightly curry flavor. I would also recommend using all chicken broth (Pacific is my favorite brand) instead of the water.

As the nights get cold, we’ll be stacking logs for the wood stove, packing away our flip flops and pulling out the slow cooker. It’s time for comfort food.

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