It seems like it is never going to stop raining here on the Gulf Coast. Even as I type this I can hear the rain coming down and the thunder in the distance. With weather like this, I know two things are for sure: I want to eat some comfort food – like Broccoli Cheddar Soup – and I do not want to have to go to the store to get it.
This loosely translates into that I have to get pretty creative with what I have on hand to make some kind of meal. Now, rain wasn’t the reason why Judy Hannemann wrote her new cookbook, The Cupboard to Table Cookbook: Satisfying Meals Made From What You Have on Hand (on sale May 3) but the way we have been getting downpours around here every day, I think it certainly applies.
The Cupboard to Table Cookbook: Satisfying Meals Made From What You Have on Hand is all about easy, crowd-pleasing recipes made with pantry, freezer, and fridge staples—so you’ll never need to run out mid-recipe or brave the grocery store crowds after work – or during a thunderstorm. Perfect for the busy mom, the frugal cook, or anyone who lives in a
rainyrural area. Judy, the blogger behind the popular Bake at Midnight blog, is known for her ability to take simple ingredients and turn them into delicious, reliable recipes that work every single time.
I am excited to share one of the recipes from the book with you! I have not tried it – yet!! – but it sure does sound delicious. And I checked – these are all items I have on hand. If it is in MY very scarce kitchen, I am betting it is in yours too.
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup celery, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
- ¹?8 teaspoon thyme
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 2 chicken stock cubes
- 1 package (10-ounce) frozen chopped broccoli, thawed
- 31/2 cups water
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 11/2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
- 1 cup milk, for thinning the soup, if desired
- Melt butter over medium heat in a large saucepan or Dutch oven. Add the celery, onion, thyme, salt, and pepper. Sauté until onion is tender—about 5 minutes.
- Add the stock cubes, broccoli, and 3 cups of water. Bring to boil, cover, and reduce heat to low. Simmer 15 minutes.
- Mix the cornstarch and the 1/2 cup water. This is a lot of cornstarch, but you want it to become the consistency of a pudding so you must use a lot. Stir in the cornstarch and when bubbles begin to rise to the surface, slowly add the heavy cream, blending well. Stirring constantly, add the shredded cheese and stir until melted.
- If the consistency is too thick for you taste, you can thin to the desired consistency using the milk. Use just enough milk to get it to the consistency you prefer. I use about
- 1/4 cup of milk, but the amount may vary depending on your preference.
- Serve immediately (as thickened products that use a cornstarch base will break down quickly).
Check out The Cupboard to Table Cookbook: Satisfying Meals Made From What You Have on Hand available now for preorder on Amazon.com.