When I started searching for low carb recipes, Broccoli and cheese soup enjoyed a high visibility rating in the search results. I had never heard of it, let alone eaten it. It seems, though, that it is quite common and popular, assuming the internet is a fair representation of real life. Maybe it’s an overseas thing? There are numerous cultural differences in food – what’s available, what something is called and what is common fare.
Broccoli is very expensive here in New Zealand at the moment. It can range anywhere from $2.50 for a small head to over $4.00. It’s a ridiculous price and is caused by the weather creating problems for both growing and harvesting. I love broccoli and no meal seems quite complete without it. I was out doing our fortnightly shop and found kilo bags of frozen broccoli for around $4.00. Yehaaa! Bargain! Nicely frozen in separate florets, no waste. Unfortunately the cooking of that broccoli left me disappointed. It was soggy and tasted a little weird. Hmmmm. 😦
But I knew just where to go to find something that might make that broccoli more palatable. Back on the search engines I went looking for a recipe that sounded both yummy and easy. I like easy, no fuss recipes.
The recipe I chose is this Keto Broccoli and Cheese Soup from Keto Connect. Matt and Megha from Keto Connect have kindly allowed me to amend their recipe in my blog and I thank them for their gracious permission. ♥
This post will hopefully demonstrate not only the wonderfully tasty recipe from Matt and Megha, but show how to easily adapt according to what one has on hand. This is often how I approach recipes. Ingredient substitutions are commonplace in my kitchen.
Here is the ingredient list for the recipe, as copied from Keto Connect.
- 1 cup Broccoli
- 5 oz Cheddar Cheese
- 2 tbsp Butter
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/4 cup Onion
- 1/4 cup celery
- 1 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/2 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
- salt and pepper
I had plenty of broccoli, and I didn’t measure. I estimate it was somewhere between one cup to one and a half cups. I didn’t measure the cheese. I just grated a bunch and adjusted it to taste. I probably used around a cup of grated Colby cheese. When it was almost done I tasted it and threw in a handful of parmesan. It rounded the flavour out nicely.
I didn’t measure (are you sensing a pattern to this?) the onion. It did up being around a quarter of a cup by random happenstance. Celery – I was all out. So I chucked in some celery salt instead. To add a bit more depth of flavour to counteract the lack of celery, I also added a generous pinch of garlic granules – a handy item to have in your pantry.
I didn’t have chicken broth or stock on hand, so I used some dried chicken stock powder mixed with water. I must make my own so I don’t have all the additives (including sugar!) that comes in the commercial stuff. I must remind myself this lifestyle is a journey – change takes time.
Next on the list was heavy cream. This is something we seldom ever buy. It is twice the price (and three times as nice) of regular cream. However I did have a little bit of thickened cream left over in a bottle, but not enough. I also had some natural unsweetened yoghurt that needed using. You know when the package is almost empty, but there’s a layer of thickened, almost solid yoghurt left around the sides; or perhaps that only happens in my fridge. I scraped that container out and then topped it up with the thickened cream to make it up to a half cup. Next time I might even be tempted to use all yoghurt!
Xanthan Gum √
Salt and Pepper √ These are the only ingredients I used exactly as per the recipe.
I followed the instructions given in the recipe and cooked up some low carb bread to go with it. Soup and bread go together like chips (crisps) and dip. It’s just what we’ve always done. Next time I will leave out the bread. This soup is f-i-l-l-i-n-g and the bread was just unnecessary in this case.
Although I somewhat butchered the recipe to use what I had, the result was tasty, filling and deeply satisfying. Never be afraid to tinker with a recipe or to be less than precise. Although I wouldn’t recommend the same approach to baking!!! The results may not be exactly like the recipe’s creator, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be as good. Different is good. Experimentation is good. Taste as you go and adjust, ALWAYS.
Happy and healthy eating,