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This is a great little soup – chock full of vegetables with enough backbone to be satisfying on its own as a dinner bowl.

Vegetarian, gluten-free and paleo-ish. While Parmesan cheese is not paleo, if you buy good quality from grass-fed milk, a hand full + a rind in a big pot of soup is not going to kill you.

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Lemon & Chive Flecked Broccoli Soup

Adapted from Broccoli Soup with Lemon Chive Cream from Orangette

Soup:

1 big bunch broccoli
1 yellow onion
2 leeks
3 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 Tbsp. olive or coconut oil
5 c. Turkey stock (or chicken or vegetable – whatever light stock you have on hand)
1 Parmesan rind (about 2 inches square – omit if strict paleo or vegan)
Kosher salt to taste

Make the soup. Slice your leeks (white and green parts only) into thin discs and rinse to clean, making sure to separate the rings to get into all the places grit likes to hide. Halve and slice your onion thin.

In a heavy-bottomed stock pot or dutch oven, heat the butter and oil over medium heat. When the fat is warm, add the leeks and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent (about 10 minutes).

While that is working, dice the garlic and chop the broccoli (stems included).

When the onion is translucent and the leeks are nice and soft, add the garlic and cook a minute or two more (until you start to smell the garlic). Add the broccoli, stock, Parmesan rind and a big pinch of salt and stir. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook partially covered about 20 minutes or until the broccoli is tender.

While your soup is working, get your lemon and chive cream ready to go.

Cream:

The top layer of thick cream from 1 can of full-fat coconut milk that has been chilled + a little extra coconut milk for added body
2 scallions (white and pale green parts only)
Chives
1/2 a lemon
Grated Parmesan
Big pinch salt

Slice the scallions into thin rounds. Snip or mince chives until you have a big hand full. Zest and juice the lemon.

In a medium bowl, combine the coconut cream with the scallions, chives, lemon zest, lemon juice, and a big hand full of grated parmesan cheese. Add a big pinch of salt and taste. If it needs more, zap it again. You’re going for light, bright and acidic but not overly bracing. If you need a little more body or things are looking not creamy enough, add coconut milk a little at a time (tasting as you go) until it looks just right.

Back to the soup.

When your soup is done, remove the Parmesan rind and either whiz with an immersion blender or buzz in a regular blender until mostly smooth. I left a few chunks here and there for added interest but a velvety smooth soup would be just as nice. Don’t forget to remove the Parmesan rind, especially if you’re going the immersion blender route. I forgot, and while my Vitamix disappeared it just fine, Parmesan rind is still not good eats.

Top with the lemon & chive cream and serve. Serves 2 for dinner with 1-2 lunches.