Thursday, January 31, 2013

Creamy Beer Cheese Soup with Salsa Verde

Creamy Beer Cheese Soup with Salsa Verde

Those of you who have been around for awhile may remember that I explained my complicated relationship with football last year. By complicated relationship, I mean that I want to like it. I really, really do. I just don't. I love the camaraderie of rooting for a team, the fact that football signifies the start of fall, and the excuse to drink beer and eat wings.

I was a marching band geek in high school, and therefore attended about 50 high school football games over my years at Ocean Township High School. Most of my time during those games was spent eating nachos, trying to avoid dropping my flute below the bleachers, and annoying/awkwardly attempting to flirt with the drummers who had the misfortune of being seated in front of me. Unfortunately none of that time was spent cultivating a love for the sport.

Fortunately, I did cultivate a love for game foods of all kinds, and wanted to share a recipe that would be appropriate for Superbowl Sunday. I decided to do something different than the standard dips and wings this year, and I turned to Pam Anderson's (no, not THAT Pam Anderson) Cook without a Book: Meatless Meals.I decided that this recipe would be perfect - and it's a good way to make sure your vegetarian friends don't get left out of the food festivities!

This was my first time making or tasting beer cheese soup, so my Wisconsinite readers will have to tell me if this is even remotely authentic. Authentic or not, it was really tasty, and would be a fantastic addition to a Superbowl spread! I mean, its two main ingredients are beer and cheese. Totally football appropriate. Leftovers reheat surprisingly well for a cheese-based soup, and I have a feeling that keeping this warm in a slow cooker would work splendidly.

What you'll need:

1 1/2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 large white onion, medium diced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups good quality low-sodium vegetable broth (I recommend Pacific brand)
12 ounces beer (I used Dos Equis Special Lager - use something fairly light in color)
1/2 cup salsa verde
1 large garlic clove, finely minced
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
8 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese (don't use pre-grated - it doesn't melt as well)
1/2 cup evaporated milk
Salt and pepper, to taste 

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions, and saute until soft and translucent - about 3-5 minutes. Stir in flour, broth, and beer, stirring constantly until the foam subsides. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, partially covered, to simmer for 10 minutes.

During the last couple minutes of cooking, stir in the salsa, garlic, and Worcestershire. Whisk in the cheese until melted. Whisk in the evaporated milk, and cook soup until heated through. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve immediately. Garnish with jalapenos if desired, and spike with Tabasco if you're insane like me.

Makes 3 small servings (about 1 1/2 cup per serving)

Source: Adapted from Cook without a Book: Meatless Meals: Recipes and Techniques for Part-Time and Full-Time Vegetarians

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  1. You know me so well! Cheese plus beer, I am sold! I want to put this on nachos sooooo bad! I love that you added an extra kick with the salsa. PS When I was in high school, I had a thing for drummers too!

  2. Beer + cheese are proof that love is real and the world is good. Melted together in a creamy soup? DONE!

  3. This looks great!! Btw - love the Dos Equis in the background. That's the one and only beer to win me over with its ad campaigns :)

  4. These so happen to be two of my favorite foods! Sounds amazing.

  5. Any thing involving cheese and beer is perfect in my book.
    Great photos!!!

  6. Ohh this looks fantastic! I'm the same way, I like the food more than the sport. Oh well...

  7. Yeah I have the same relationship with football ;) This soup looks fabulous!

  8. I just made this with my own salsa...Texas Brew Fire Roasted Poblano Verde and would like to make it into a thicker hot dip for a party kind of like one does with Velveeta and Rotel....but want to use my salsa...would u add more cheese or ?....just wondering...would make a wonderful new dip...not the regular for sure...thanks Brenda

    1. Hey Brenda! So glad you tried it! I wouldn't recommend adapting this recipe to be a dip - I think you'd have to decrease the liquid too much, and would lose a lot of the yummy beer flavor. I know that Tracy from Shutterbean has a recipe for homemade nacho cheese, that I bet you could adapt to incorporate your homemade salsa: Good luck!

    2. Thanks so much....found your recipes from She sends me a lot of recipes and works with my salsa all the time to make yummy food....I am going right away to check out your suggestion...thanks so much Brenda


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