Friday, January 11, 2013

Easy Broccoli Soup

Living in a tropical country means that you start enjoying light lunches better than full course meals - especially if you also have to do the washing up after cooking the full course meal. On days when its just me for lunch, I prefer making a light lunch with soup and a sandwich or a salad. Its fast, easy, healthy and most importantly less cleaning up ;-)

This easy broccoli soup has very little ingredients and can be tweaked to your taste. You can make it light with olive oil and skimmed milk or you can go the full length with butter and cream. This soup is a bit thick - so any leftovers can be used for an easy broccoli pesto pasta as well. Do refer the notes for all the possible variations.

Easy Broccoli Soup




Ingredients:

1 Broccoli - washed and cut into florets
1/2 Carrot - diced
2 cloves of garlic - chopped finely
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup milk (I used full cream milk)
Salt to taste















Method:

1. Heat the olive oil in a pressure pan. Add the pepper and garlic. Allow the garlic to brown a little for that burnt garlic flavor
2. Add the carrots and saute well.
3. Add the Broccoli and mix well. The broccoli will start turning a dark green.
4. Add 1 or 2 cups of water and salt and pressure cook for 1 whistle. If cooking in a pan, then allow the mixture to come to a boil and simmer for 15 -20 minutes until the broccoli is well done.
5. Switch off and strain the solids and keep the liquid in the same pan. Cool and blend the solids into a smooth paste in the mixie. You can also use a handblender and also leave in a few bits if you prefer.
6. Add the paste back to the liquid and mix well. Heat the soup again.
7. Taste and adjust salt and pepper. Add the milk and gently mix well until the soup is well mixed and heated (not boiling).
8. Serve hot with croutons or bread sticks.


Notes:

1. If you don't like the burnt garlic flavor, then substitute with ginger or omit all together.

2. For a clear soup, discard the solids and omit the milk

3. You can substitute potatoes instead of carrots. For the kids, try using sweet potatoes for a healthier option.

4. Add a couple of walnuts or almonds while blitzing the solids for a richer tasting soup. This paste can be directly used as a pasta sauce. Add milk and pour over any cooked pasta.

5. Butter adds a beautiful taste - but it also increases the calories. But if you are like me - then you can justify that the broccoli is so healthy that it compensates the butter :-)

6. You can use cream instead of milk for slightly sweeter and richer taste.

7. For a power-packed version, add 1/4 cup of oats along with the broccoli and pressure cook.

This is not the end of variations. I will keep updating as and when I try different things with this soup. Do you have any ideas???

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