Cream of Broccoli “Cheese” Soup
- 6 cups broccoli (approx. 24oz), cut into florets, divided (reserve 2 cups for roasting) remove & reserve 1 cup of stems
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 small Yukon gold potatoes, cubed
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon sea salt, or to taste
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon fresh thyme, leaves removed
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- ½ cup raw cashews
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- Soak cashews in cold water for 30 minutes, then drain and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400° Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place 2 cups of broccoli on parchment lined baking sheet and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt. Roast in preheated oven for 10 – 15 minutes, until tender.
- In a medium pot heat remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Then add the celery, garlic, potatoes, broccoli stems and 2 cups of broccoli florets, stirring frequently, until tender and fragrant, about 10 minutes.
- Add sea salt, thyme, black and crushed red peppers to the veggie mixture. Then stir in 2 cups of the vegetable broth and bring to a gentle boil. Remove from heat and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Working in batches, transfer the veggie and broth mixture to a high-speed blender. Add ½ cup veggie broth along with the raw cashews, apple cider vinegar and nutritional yeast and blend until creamy and fully combined.
- Pour blended soup mixture back into the pot, along with remaining 2 cups of broccoli florets and 1.5 cups remaining vegetable broth. Simmer until broccoli is tender, 15 minutes.
- Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to the soup and season with more salt and black pepper, as needed.
- Serve immediately and top with reserved roasted broccoli and toasted bread cubes.