Another Keep-It-Simple-Stupid soup. No more than an onion, with plenty broccoli, and a bit of Stilton. I reckon on four parts broccoli (by weight), to one part cheese. This gives a bit of bite in the mouth; and the cheese serves to complement the broccoli, rather than overpower it.
Cream? Garlic? Potatoes, carrots, celery, leek? Milk? Herbs, bay leaf, parsley, chilli? Naaaah – just don’t. You lose the simple, magical, and joyous marriage of broccoli and cheese.
The broccoli stalks? Don’t throw them away – chuck ’em in for a wee bit of “chew”.
Liquidise? Naaah. Don’t bother … it’s just extra washing up.
- 1 onion (or a leek)
- a good-sized broccoli head – about 800g/1¾lbs
- 200g/7oz Stilton
- a vegetable stock cube (or chicken stock, or vegetable stock)
- salt and pepper
- a little grated nutmeg to garnish
- Chop the onion quite fine; pop into a saucepan with just a little oil, and sauté gently to soften.
- Cut the broccoli florets off the stalk and set aside. Chop the stalk to about the same size as the onion pieces – add to the saucepan, and continue cooking gently until onions are soft, but not browning.
- Add about 1 litre (1¾ pints) of water, crumble in the stock cube, and simmer gently until the broccoli stalks are very nearly tender.
- Add the florets and the crumbled Stilton, and simmer for a further 5 minutes or so, until florets are just tender (but not overcooked) and cheese is melted. Adjust seasoning – perhaps a little salt, if necessary; and a grind of black pepper. Mash with a potato masher – if you wish.
- Serve in bowls – Felicity Cloake suggests a little Stilton crumbled on top, and a good grating of nutmeg. Me? I’m happy with just a nice crusty baguette or roll.
Roll on winter!