Some of my favorite go to recipe books are the ones I have from Marcella Hazan. There is something about Italian food that I always long for. The artistry is masterful and the flavors and comfort of the food is pure bliss. With the cold evenings, I thought this soup with readily available ingredients would be easy to make and perfect to enjoy with a glass of Pinot Noir or a Chardonnay. Enjoy.
Marcella’s Broccoli Soup
Take your time when caramelizing the onions. It takes time and some onions take longer depending on their sugar content. This recipe is adapted from Marcella Hazan’s from her book Marcella Cucina.
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cups yellow onion, julienned
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced (about 1 tablespoon)
2 cups Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, medium dice
2 1/2 cups broccoli florets, no stems
3 1/2 cups stock, chicken or vegetable
6 smallish fresh basil leaves, torn
1/2 cup Parmesan, grated
In a 3 1/2-quart heavy-bottomed pot, combine the olive oil and half the butter. Place the pot over medium heat. Once the butter begins to melt, add the onions. Season them with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Saute the onions until they become golden. Don’t rush this step and adjust the heat as necessary to keep them from browning too fast. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the potatoes. Stir them a bit to coat them well with oil and let them sizzle away for a minute or two. Add the broccoli and do the same as you did with the potatoes. Add the stock. Bring the stock to a light boil. Taste the broth and adjust the seasoning. Go easy on the salt. The Parmesan will add some saltiness. I sometimes save my Parmesan rind and drop a bit into the stock for added flavor. Simmer the soup until the broccoli and potatoes are tender. The color of the broccoli will change, but if it is good broccoli it won’t be olive drab either. ce the potatoes have cooked through, add the Parmesan, the remaining butter, and the basil. Stir to combine and serve with more black pepper.