Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Over the Weekend (and Potato Broccoli Cheddar Soup!!)

I had a wonderful weekend - Saturday I helped my friend with shooting a short little action movie for a film competition (really, I just held reflectors and stuff like that), which was a lot of fun!  Then I went to a friend's birthday party that night.

Sunday morning was lovely - I went to the Farmer's Market and got all kinds of wonderful goodies!!  I've started making good use of my juicer again, so I got a lot of beautiful fruits & veggies.

That was $35 well spent (yes, ALL of this gorgeous stuff was only $35 - who says you can't be healthy AND cheap!?).

After that I met up with my mom, my sister, and Deb for brunch!  The brunch place wasn't great but we still had fun hanging out. 

We spent the rest of the day shopping (I did end up spending a little money, but actually returned most of it... I felt so guilty!), and it was all-in-all a wonderful day!

That night I watched movies and hung out with Fudgie.  He was very relaxed...

My mom gave me a hand blender to try out - I guess dad bought one too many appliances again - haha!  I decided to give it a try and make some soup - I've had a bunch of red potatoes that I needed to use.  It turned out SO YUMMY!!!

Potato Broccoli & Cheddar Soup
This will serve about 5-6 people, probably with some left over!
Took me about 20 minutes of prep, and about 1 hour total cooking time. 

- 5-6 medium red potatoes (peeled, diced)
- 1 small yellow onion (diced)
- 2-3 cloves of garlic (minced)
- 1 head of broccoli (chopped)
- 1 cup white beans (optional - I just had some in the fridge, so I figured I'd use them!)
- 1 stick of unsalted butter
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups of half & half (or soymilk / almond milk)
- 2-3 cups of vegetable broth
- 6-8 oz of cheddar cheese (cubed)
- seasonings (salt & pepper) to taste
- hot sauce (optional)

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Add the garlic and onion, and sautee until the onions start to become translucent. 

Add the diced potatoes and the vegetable broth - enough to cover the potatoes, plus a little extra so that it can boil.  Cover the pot and turn the heat down to medium.  Let simmer for 20 minutes. 

Add the broccoli and the beans to the soup, and stir well.  Add in the cheese cubes and milk.  Cover and turn the heat down a little more (just under medium).  Let simmer for another 10 minutes. 

Season with salt & pepper, and if you like, blend the soup in batches.  You can leave it chunky too!  I used the hand mixer (remove the pot from heat first!), which worked great - it left some chunks, but blended some of it too.  

Serve with a dash of hot sauce on top (optional) - I made toast with butter and garlic salt, then sliced it into "dipping fingers" - it was SO GOOD!

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend too! :)

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