Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Canadian Cheese Soup with Pumpernickel Croutons

It's a cold winter day, so that means it's time for a nice cheese soup. This one doesn't use beer, unlike most other cheese soup recipes, because he hates the taste of beer. More on that later. So this soup also involves pumpernickel croutons, which are delicious.

We had mixed reactions to this soup. He liked it a lot, while I was slightly disappointed. I think it's because I missed the addition of the beer to the soup (I like it in cheese soup, like the Sam Adams version). Since he doesn't like beer, he enjoyed it. It's a good recipe and is very tasty, but it is probably not a make-again.

Here's our soup, with an abundance of croutons (we kind of went overboard):

Canadian Cheese Soup with Pumpernickel Croutons
From Cooking Light

3 (1-ounce) slices pumpernickel bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 onion, peeled and quartered
1 carrot, peeled and quartered
1 celery stalk, quartered
1 teaspoon butter or stick margarine
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 (16-ounce) cans fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth, divided
3 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 375°.

Place bread cubes on a jelly-roll pan, and bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until toasted.

While the croutons bake, combine onion, carrot, and celery in a food processor, and pulse until chopped. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add vegetables; sauté 5 minutes or until tender.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Gradually add 1 can of broth to flour in a medium bowl; stir well with a whisk. Add flour mixture to pan. Stir in 1 can of broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook 10 minutes or until thick. Stir in milk, salt, paprika, and pepper; cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat; add the cheese, and stir until cheese melts. Ladle soup into bowls, and top with croutons.

Yield: 8 servings

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