Thursday, January 31, 2013
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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