Missing the green

One day I woke up and really wanted some broccoli and goat cheese manicotti. I have no idea why. I couldn’t remember ever having had any manicotti, much less a broccoli version. So I made what I was imagining in my head with some steamed broccoli, 4 oz of goat cheese, a small container of low fat ricotta, salt, pepper and some garlic flakes. I par boiled the manicotti stuffed it with the broccoli cheese mixture, laid it down in a small glass baking dish covered with some organic marinara sauce from a jar, poured a bit more sauce on top covered with some white cheddar, and baked at 350°f for a half hour. When we were eating this lovely concoction I thought to my self this filling would make an awesome soup. It did.

Suddenly Springtime Broccoli Goat Cheese Soup

1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 t olive oil
4 cups organic broccoli flourettes
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
4-6 oz goat cheese
15 oz low fat ricotta
juice from 1-2 lemons
1 T coconut vinegar or rice wine vinegar
sprigs of fresh cilantro, parsley or basil
salt
pepper

Saute onion and garlic in olive oil over medium high heat. Cook until onion is tender. Add in broth and half of the broccoli. Bring broth mixture to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until broccoli is tender. While the broth is simmering steam remaining broccoli until it is bright green.

Remove the broth from heat and transfer to a blender. Blend the broth in batches adding in the steamed broccoli. Transfer to a bowl and add in cheeses, mix until cheeses are melted. There are two ways you you can spice this soup – you can leave it pretty much the way it is and have a nice light, creamy broccoli cheese soup by just adding in a little bit of lemon juice salt and pepper. Or you can give it a really bright spring-like flavor by adding in more lemon juice, coconut vinegar (or other fruit vinegar) and some finely chopped fresh herb like cilantro, parsley or basil. It’s very simple, just imagine in your head what flavors you want to taste the just keep playing with the proportions while paying very close attention to what you taste until you get the taste you are imagining in your head.

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