A soup for fall

How much money do you spend on food a week? Or a month? Seriously, do you know? I have to admit, I don’t know the answer for myself.

I try to pay attention, but it’s so easy to lose track.

A couple of things I’ve come across recently, though, have inspired me to put some good practices in place once again. Jen of use real butter took part in a one-week hunger awareness challenge in October: eating on $30 for the entire week. I don’t know if I’d be able to do it, but it’s a reminder of how good I have it. Also, attending an instructional session on coupons last month, I was astounded by the amount of money one can save on groceries. Now, to be honest, I have no intentions of clipping, filing, and actually bringing coupons to the store (I’d drown in paper), but I did learn some things that will help save money. The easiest lesson for me to put into practice is looking at stores’ online ads before shopping. That way I can plan my list partly around the specials.

That’s where the recipe I’m about to share comes from.

Broccoli Soup

One local store recently sold 10 pounds of broccoli for $10. A great deal, right? At least it sounds like it. Broccoli is healthy, so I bought a lot of it, figuring I could decide later what to do with it.

Finally I came up with an idea: adapt a traditional Norwegian soup using broccoli.

As I peruse Scandinavian cookbooks I see multiple recipes for spinach soup, or spinatsuppe, sometimes garnished with slices of hard-boiled egg. I plan on trying the spinach version someday, but in the meantime, the broccoli soup is a good substitution.

Norwegian-Inspired Broccoli Soup with Hard-Boiled Egg
Adapted very loosely from Food & Wine

This is a basic broccoli soup. If you have a favorite version, by all means go ahead and use it. The eggs are the special touch.

2 heads of broccoli (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 Tb unsalted butter
1/2 Tb extra virgin olive oil
1/2 large white onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 quart chicken broth
1/2 c heavy cream
1/2 c milk
1-2 hard-boiled eggs

Peel broccoli stems and chop florets and stems into evenly-sized pieces. Melt butter and olive oil over medium heat in a large pot. Add onion and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add broccoli and broth and gently simmer for about 20 minutes until broccoli is cooked through, adding more broth if necessary. Working in batches, purée soup, then stir in cream and milk and simmer until heated through. Garnish with slices of hard-boiled eggs.

Serves 4