Brrrrr.... baby it's cold outside!! That calls for soup. Something rich and decadent. In the kitchen of Miss. Two Rivers (the name of our river house) we tend to follow a ketogenic lifestyle. After some contemplating, and a quick survey of the fridge, we settled in on Broccoli Cheddar Soup. One of the things I love about this, is honestly you can make it as plain jane or go all out as you want. We chose to go over board with it.
Start by sauteing 6 pieces of bacon until they are crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and dice. Add in 1 1/2 cups of broccoli into the bacon grease. You can chop these up to your liking.. I prefer them fairly small, but it's just a matter of preference. Liberally salt(Check out the health benefits of Pink Himalayan Salt!!!) pepper, add garlic, herbs d Provence and a small dash of celery seed. Once your broccoli has started to soften some add in in 1/2 a stick of butter (you know the deal... butter, not margarine) and 2 cups of chicken broth. Cover and let simmer until the broccoli is tender. While you are waiting for this shred 1 8 oz block of extra sharp cheddar cheese. Slowly add in the cheese to your soup mix a handful at a time and stir. Once you have added all of the cheese you will then slowly add in 2 cups of heavy whipping cream. Make sure you do this slow, because if not your soup can separate. Doesn't really effect the taste, it just won't look as pretty... Reduce your heat down to low and add the bacon back in all except for 2 tablespoons. I have at this point added in a table spoon of Pawleys Island Pimento Cheese for 2 reasons.. 1- the extra cheddar, 2- the cream cheese in it adds thickness. I apologize for not having specific measurements on the spices. We do it based on taste.. because we are fearless and reckless like that.
Dish out the yumminess into your favorite bowl and garnish with the remaining bacon some fresh Parmesan and scallions. I am a big scallion fan.. super big. Now, because we decided to be really over the top, I also added in some sauteed shrimp on the top. Personal beverage preference here would be a chardonnay. This is a super rich soup so it needs something to balance it out.