Broccoli Cheddar Soup and Spiced Honey Lemon Chicken
I hope everyone had a great winter break! I had an amazing break, and wish I could be on winter break year round. But unfortunately that is impossible and I’m back at school for another quarter. I already have way too much work to do, but I’m hoping this will be a good quarter!
This summer my friends and I kind of started a tradition of cooking dinners together. We make up a menu and all take part in cooking and eating together. It’s really fun cooking with my friends, and I am always really impressed with how good everything tastes. Over winter break, we got together and made broccoli and cheddar soup and spiced honey lemon chicken. I was not disappointed! We pulled off another great dinner, which I’m sure you and your friends can too! Keep reading for the delicious recipes 🙂
Broccoli and Cheddar Soup
recipe adapted from Guilty Kitchen (http://guiltykitchen.com/?p=781)
3 Tbsp butter
3 Large heads of Broccoli (divided into stems and florets)
1 small yellow onion
1 clove garlic, grated or minced
900mL low sodium chicken broth (we used a carton)
1 cup whole milk, warm
3 Tbsp all purpose flour
3 Tbsp butter
2-3 cups sharp cheddar, grated
1/2 tsp mustard powder
2 dashes tabasco
1/4 tsp paprika
salt & pepper
1. Dice onion and peel broccoli stems very fine and add to a large soup pot.
2. Add 3 Tbsp butter to pot and sauté on medium heat until softened, about 6-8 minutes.
3. Add in garlic and sauté for another 2-3 minutes.
4. Add broth, turn up heat and allow to come to a simmer. Turn down to medium low and continue to simmer.
5. Meanwhile, in small saucepan oven medium heat, melt other 3 Tbsp of butter. Sprinkle flour over melted butter and stir to form a roux.
6. Slowly add heated milk to roux, whisking as you go. Bring to a simmer and allow to thicken. On a slow simmer, with constant stirring, you can cook this cream sauce for up to 20 minutes. Season with salt & pepper.
7. Add cream sauce to broth, whisking to combine.
8. Add grated cheese and make sure it is completely incorporated before adding broccoli florets. You can add the seasonings at this point (mustard powder, Tabasco and paprika)
9. Add in broccoli florets and allow to simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until broccoli is tender. Season with salt and pepper.
10. Thicken with a 1:1 ratio of cornstarch and water if the consistency is not thick enough for you. (you can really play around here. Ours was too thick, so we added a lot more water. )
This was probably the best broccoli cheddar soup I have ever had, and what made it even better was that we made it! None of us had made soup before, and we used the directions as a guideline. If something didn’t look right, or we wanted more cheese, we used our best guess to make it the consistency and flavor that we wanted. This soup doesn’t save well, so I suggest making this with a group of 4-6 to share!
Spiced Honey Lemon Chicken
(recipe adapted from Crepes of Wrath http://crepesofwrath.net/2009/11/02/spiced-honey-lemon-chicken-with-sweet-caramelized-brussels-sprouts/)
Ingredients (there were 6 of us so we tripled the recipe for 6 chicken breasts)
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
4 teaspoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter, melted
3 tablespoons honey
zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and pour over chicken (we put the chicken in a baking dish and poured the sauce over). Allow to marinate in the fridge for at least an hour, but you can marinate the chicken for 24 hours. The longer the chicken marinates, the more flavor it will have!
2. To broil the chicken, heat the oven to 400 degrees F and cook for 10-15 minutes on each side, until cooked through and the juices run clear (our breasts were a little bigger and needed to be cooked for 15-20 minutes on each side).
This chicken had a lot of flavor, and I loved the marinade. This was a very simple recipe that can easily be prepared on a busy night of studying.