Years ago, while growing up, if I wanted to have a bowl of soup for lunch, it came out of a small bright red and white can. It was called Campbell’s… Our family always had Campbell’s condensed cans of cream of mushroom, chicken noodle or tomato available in the cupboard ready to add water and heat up. Back then, I thought that it tasted great for I did not know any better. Homemade soup was pretty much nonexistent in our diets because we never made it at home and we rarely ate at what I would call a “sit down restaurant”. And if we did, I would always order a green salad instead of soup.
I was first introduced to making homemade soups after I moved out of the house in my late teens. I learned how to prepare soups while working my way through college as a short order cook. As a short order cook, I discovered how easy, inexpensive and delicious homemade soups can be. In the commercial kitchen, I learned how to make bean soups, cream soups, vegetable soups, noodle soups and so much more. I strongly believe that my education in the restaurant was as valuable as the high priced education that I received in college.
Today, I want to share with you an easy to make Broccoli and Spinach Bisque. It’s made with fresh organic broccoli, spinach and leeks in a good quality chicken stock with a hint of white pepper and fresh grated nutmeg. Instead of using heavy cream with a ton of fat and calories, I’ve lightened it up a bit with some 2% milk.
“Toto, I’ve a feeling that we’re not having Campbell’s anymore”. Enjoy! Tessa
- 1 pound broccoli florets
- 2 cups leeks (white and light green parts only, chopped)
- 5 cups fresh spinach
- 1 Tbs butter
- 1 quart Chicken Stock
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp white pepper
- 4 Tbs butter
- 4 Tbs flour
- 2 cups milk (2%)
Begin by cooking the leeks in 1 Tbs butter in a large sauce pan. Cook over medium flame until translucent, stirring constantly taking care not to burn. Add broccoli, chicken stock and salt. Cover and cook until broccoli is tender. Add spinach, grated nutmeg and white pepper and cook a few minutes more. Meanwhile in a medium sized sauce pan cook butter and flour mixture (making a roux) until a light golden brown. Add milk, whisk constantly and cook until thickened. Add milk mixture to broccoli mixture. Puree with hand blender and cook for a few more minutes. Taste and correct your seasonings. Ladle into cups or bowls and garnish with chopped green onion or chives. Makes 2 quarts or about 8 – 1 cup servings.