Last updated on September 25th, 2022 at 07:46 am
In contrast to the grey skies outside, this Cheesy Jalapeño Broccoli Soup is a vibrant and warming mix of spicy broccoli soup with a cheesy cashew cream. Topped with fresh coriander, a splash of lime and crunchy corn chips, this bowl is all things nourishing and good.
I needed a pick me up this week. While chocolate would normally be my go-to, inspiration took me to a soup pot and this wonderfully green and spicy broccoli soup. The soul needs what it needs.
This week a cow on the other side of the world passed away and I cried buckets. To say my reaction to the news surprised me is an understatement; I never met this creature but I feel his absence like he was one of my own. Dudley was the ambassador for The Gentle Barn, an animal sanctuary in the United States. An amputee, Dudley's heart and grace helped to heal others with disabilities and those burdened by life's twists. Only three years-old when he left for the paddock in the stars, Dudley's time here was short but powerful.
Dudley will be missed across the world and not because he was particularly special, although he was, but because he represented hope. Hope that the world can be kinder. Hope that in a time when the news is littered with so much sadness and fear, a cow with three can legs can find its way in to the light and make us smile. Dudley made us believe in miracles and reminded us that no matter our form, we are all in this together, connected and affected by each other. We can affect change.
And so today, I am feeling a little sad, a little thoughtful and thanks to Dudley, a little hopeful. The increasingly grey clouds outside can only add up to one thing in this kitchen right now; soup.
This cheesy jalapeño broccoli soup is a soup in two parts. Firstly, a slightly spicy, full bodied broccoli soup made greener and healthier by a bucket of baby green spinach. And secondly, a cheesy swirl of silky cashew cream. Each part can be eaten separately, try the cashew cheese on nachos, but together they balance each other in the perfect bowl of spiced soup.
Spicy is a subjective thing and this dish can be made spicier or less so depending on your endurance. I start my broccoli soup with two jalapeños and add another during the blending process if needed. The spiciness is also determined by the individual jalapeño; they are generally mild but you can get the occasional fire cracker. Tread lightly first and add later if needed. As the spice can be tweaked as too can the cheesiness. Add more cream for a cheesier soup, less for less. Simples. The beauty of this recipe is that you can make it your own.
And so, as I sit eating my cheesy jalapeño broccoli soup I send my love to a cow I never met. Vale Mr Dudley. I cannot fully understand how you can affect me so but I am so grateful for the reminder that we are all connected and that miracles do happen. I will miss you, my friend. I never met you but I will miss you all the same.
Vegan Broccoli Soup with Jalapeños
For the Soup
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter or olive oil
- 1 onion diced (yellow, brown or white)
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 jalapeño roughly chopped + plus more for garnish (optional)
- 2 medium potatoes peeled and diced
- 700 grams / 1.4lbs broccoli florets
- 4 cups / 1L vegetable stock
- 2 cups / 500ml water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- black pepper to taste
- 1 cup vegan cheddar one that melts well
Cashew Cream Ingredients
- ½ cup raw cashews soaked overnight or in boiling water for 15 minutes
- 2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- ⅓ cup water add more as needed
- 1 lime
- handful coriander washed and chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil to drizzle
- ⅓ cup corn chips broken up
- To make the soup, place the onion, garlic and jalapeño (optional) in a food processor and blitz to a chop. I usually pulse 2 or 3 times. If you don't have a processor, finely dice the ingredients.
- Heat a tablespoon of oil in a soup or large pot over medium heat and add the onion mixture. Season with salt and for sauté for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft.
- Add the chopped potato and cook for another minute, stirring regularly.
- Add the stock and increase the heat to bring the soup to a soft boil. Turn the heat down, add the broccoli and cook for around fifteen minutes or until the potato is cooked through.
- Season again with salt (optional) and pepper and remove the soup from the heat
For the Cashew Cream
- Drain and rinse the cashews and add them to a blender. Add the water and nutritional yeast and blend well until smooth and silky. Add small dashes of extra water to move things along if needed. We are looking for a thick-ish but pourable consistency
- Pour the cashew cream in to a pouring jug or cup.
- Rinse out the blender and add the broccoli soup, in batches if needed, and blend until smooth and well combined. Or use a hand blender for this. Be careful though, it's hot. Transfer the soup back to the pot and over a gentle heat add the cashew cream and the vegan cheese stirring the make sure everything is combined and the cheese has melted.
- To serve, pour the broccoli soup in a bowl and scatter with crushed corn chips, some chopped jalapeño and fresh coriander. Finish with a quick drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of lime juice.