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December 4, 2010

Beer Cheese Soup - Round 2! The American Version...

My sister sent me an email a while ago asking for a good beer cheese soup recipe and I knew I had posted one previously and liked it but don't remember it being amazing or anything...(that one is here).

There was a recipe in the ATK magazine recently that inspired me to try again and so I did. It was good but lacked the beer taste and zip of the other soup, however, this one was MUCH creamier and less gritty which I attribute to a bit o' American.

My sister hates american cheese, but M - if you're reading this - just try it! It doesn't taste like yucky american cheese, you just use 3x more extra sharp cheddar and it balances out perfectly - no gritty oily soup!

I'm just going to plug my lodge dutch oven here for a sec...Lodge EC6D33 Color Enamel Cast-Iron 6-Quart Dutch Oven, Caribbean Blue
It's sort of really awesome and I make so many things in it. Perfect for soup and I can finally make rice perfectly!!! I got it as a present from my husband a couple years ago and it was the best thing he's ever given me. He loves technology and so usually gets me gadgets but that particular year I specifically requested this and he obliged. Mine is blue, like above, because someday when I can afford to remodel my kitchen, it will be filled with blue things. My friend just bought one too and I don't know if she loves it yet, but I think she will :)

AMERICAN! Beer Cheese Soup

4 Tbsp butter
1 yellow onion, chopped fine - about 1 cup
2 carrots, finely diced
1 large celery stalk, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup flour
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 - 12 oz bottle beer (I actually used miller lite this time since it was all we had - I think the lack of beer taste definitely had something to do with it. ATK recommended Miller High Life! which I thought was funny, but my husband reminded me that it's the "champagne of beers", so hey...who am I to judge.)
12 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
4 oz american cheese, frozen for 15 mn and then shredded
2 tsp cornstarch
Salt and Pepper to taste
POPCORN!!! for garnish (Mmmmmmmm)

1. Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery and cook until lightly browned, 8 -10 mn. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
2. Stir in the flour and cook until golden, about a minute.
3. Slowly whisk in the broth, beer and milk. Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low and simmer gently (do not boil) until the carrots are very soft, about 20 mn.
4. Meanwhile, toss the cheeses together in a large bowl. Sprinkle with the cornstarch and toss until well combined.
5. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until completely smooth (safest done off the stove)
6. Return soup to the stove and simmer over medium low heat.
7. Whisk in the cheese a handful at a time, until smooth.
8. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve garnished with popcorn (lots of it!)


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