Rick, my husband and the photographer cum prep chef cum assistant food stylist for this blog, is the one who usually does the Saturday morning farmers’ market run. He’s an exuberant food shopper, likes to buy plenty of something when it’s fresh and lively. So we wound up with a huge amount of broccolini a few weeks ago, double-huge, you might say, because our son Jenan was to be in town for a few meals. Well, the week came and went, as did Jenan, and there was still a lot of broccolini left. Following the lemons-to-lemonade slogan, I made broccolini soup. Briefly simmered with a bit of onion in just water, the “tired” vegetable retained an appealing green color and, capped with a fried cheddar cheese floe, became a filling bowl of simple brassica goodness.
Makes about 4 cups
1 cup (about 1/2 medium) chopped yellow or white onion
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 pound broccolini, coarsely cut up
3 cups filtered water
Fried Cheddar Cheese, for serving (see the sidebar)
1. Combine the oil, 2 tablespoons water, onion, and salt in a large saucepan over medium heat and cook until the onion is wilted and no longer sharp smelling, about 6 minutes.
2. Add the broccolini and 3 cups water and bring to a boil over high heat. Decrease the heat to medium-high, cover, and cook until the broccolini is barely pierceable, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, uncover, and let cool until no longer piping hot.
3. Puree in a blender or food processor. (A blender will turn out a smoother puree.)
4. To serve, reheat the soup if necessary. Ladle into individual wide bowls and garnish each with a fried cheddar cheese floe or two.