Hi, this is Kathy Crow and today I fixed a wonderful soup for Meatless Monday. Several years
ago I had a cup of Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese soup at one of my favorite eateries. It became a
“must have” every time we ate there. It was so very rich and creamy with little bits of vegetables
that just melted in your mouth. Then one day we went in to eat and my dear soup was gone. No
longer did they carry Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese soup.
Recently I was just very hungry for soup and for Cheddar cheese soup. Not Broccoli/Cheddar
just cheddar cheese. I began searching at first for Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese but I just couldn’t
quite get the feel of them recipes until I found this one that Emeril Lagasse used. So, I tried it
and with just a few adjustments I made it my own.
Here it is:
•4 tablespoons butter
•1 large onion, finely chopped
•1/3 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
•1/3 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
•4 cloves garlic, minced
•1/2 cup all-purpose flour
•2 cups chicken stock
•1 1/2 cups whole milk
•1 1/2 cups heavy cream
•12 ounces sharp yellow cheddar cheese, grated (about 4 cups)
•1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
•Crumbled bacon, salsa, or creme fraiche, chopped parsley leaves, optional for garnish
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In a large, heavy saucepan melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and peppers
and saute until vegetables are soft, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Add
flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes.
Slowly whisk in the stock, milk and heavy cream. Bring soup to a low boil and reduce heat so that
the soup barely simmers. Cook, stirring frequently, until the soup is very thick and flavorful, about
20 minutes. Add the grated cheese in 1/2 cup increments, stirring after each addition until completely melted and
smooth. Do not allow soup to boil. Season with salt and cayenne pepper, to taste.
Serve in shallow bowls, topped with some crumbled crispy bacon bits, a dollop of salsa or creme
fraiche, and chopped parsley, as desired.
The changes I made were to use Half and Half for all of the milk products, added more cheese
(you can use a mild cheddar for a portion of the cheese if you prefer a milder taste) and to add
some pimento for garnish. The chicken stock can be increased if the soup is too thick for your tastes