Cook time: 35 minutes
This recipe is adapted from “America’s Test Kitchen: Healthy Family Cookbook”
Note: Make sure to buy evaporated milk, not sweetened condensed milk, which is not the same and will be too sugary for this recipe. Don’t boil the soup after adding the cheese or it will separate. –America’s Test Kitchen
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 bunch broccoli (about 1 ½ pounds), florets cut into 1-inch pieces, stems trimmed and sliced 1/4 inch thick, divided use
1 pound leeks, white and light green parts only, halved lengthwise, sliced thin, and rinsed thoroughly
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or 1.5 tbsp vegetable broth powder & 3 cups of water)
1 cup water
¾ cup fat-free evaporated milk (see note)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 cup extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Salt and Pepper to taste
Add olive oil in a large Soup Pot over medium heat. Add the leeks and broccoli stems and cook until softened, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Stir in the broth and water and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the broccoli stems are soft, about 8 minutes. Stir in the broccoli florets, cover, and continue to cook until tender, about 5 minutes longer.
Puree the soup with the milk, cheddar, and mustard in a blender in batches (or I use my immersion blender in the pot so I don’t have to pour hot liquids in to the blender) until cheese is melted and the soup is very smooth, about 1 minute. Return the soup to a clean pot and cook gently over medium-low heat until soup is hot. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.