Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Broccoli Apple Soup


I’m basking in warm sunshine (through the window) and a happy post-Thanksgiving glow. I am deeply grateful for our family members who traveled to spend the holiday with us and for our time gathered around the table sharing meals together. It was a warm, festive Thanksgiving weekend indeed. I hope you enjoyed the same!

After indulging in a Thanksgiving feast, I find it’s time for some simple food. Perhaps because it’s eaten from a bowl, allowing you to cup your hands around it and inhale its warm scent, soup provides the ultimate nourishing comfort. Soup is soothing and fills you up without feeling heavy ... very welcome after lots of stuffing and pie.


This Broccoli Apple Soup is beloved in our family and Isaac’s favorite. The original recipe comes from our dear friends, Ralph and Jane, two of the most nurturing, caring people I know. They would cook a pot of soup for you in a heartbeat! I’ve played with the recipe just a bit and it has even been mentioned in the NY Times. This is good soup. I recently discovered through Cook’s Illustrated that adding a handful of fresh spinach to broccoli soup pumps up the broccoli flavor and results in a more vivid green color, so I’ve added some spinach to the recipe, too.


Simple ingredients - broccoli, apples, onions, butter and broth - create a satisfying, hearty, comforting meal. You can use any variety of apples you like, just keep in mind they will affect how sweet or tart your soup becomes. I used Aurora apples this last time, crisp with a nice bit of sweetness, and they were quite good. A swirl of thick yogurt to finish adds tangy flavor and rounds out the earthy sweetness.


It’s getting dark early now (4:30pm!), so I see a lot of soup in the coming months, preferably sipped by a fire with a cozy blanket.

Broccoli Apple Soup
Serves 6-8

1 large head of broccoli
3 large apples (Golden Delicious or Aurora are good)
2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, diced
6 cups vegetable broth
A generous handful of fresh spinach leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Thick, plain yogurt to dollop (optional)

Cut the broccoli florets off the stalk and set aside. Cut the stalks into 1-inch pieces. Peel the apples, core and cut into 1-inch pieces.

In a large soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and apple chunks. Saute about 6 minutes. Add the broth and the broccoli stalks. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the broccoli florets to the soup and simmer for 5 more minutes. Remove from heat. Toss in a generous handful of fresh spinach and stir.

Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with a dollop of yogurt.

22 comments:

  1. What a fabulous soup. I already loved broccoli soup but never thought about adding apples and spinach to it. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe. I find myself eating extra apples in winter, cause for some reason it lifts my spirits and I can get through the work day with more cheer and energy.

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    1. Thank you, Chef Moji! Apples are indeed wonderful - a honeycrisp is my favorite snack these days. I hope you enjoy the soup if you decide to try it!

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  2. Love! Not much beats a bowl of soup post all the seasonal festivities. Last year for me it was cauliflower but this year it may well be broccoli & apple....what a wonderful (& new) combination for me :)

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    1. Thanks, Mairi! Mmm, cauliflower soup is marvelous. I'll have to make some soon. I hope you enjoy this one!

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    1. Let me know if you try it, Brooke - it's quick to put together and a kid pleaser in our house. These cold nights have me craving soup all the time now!

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  4. Such interesting flavor combinations. Beautiful!

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    1. Thanks so much, Chinmayie! Apples and broccoli are a pretty unlikely pairing but work nicely together here. I'm curious about apples and cauliflower now...

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  5. This is just perfect after the heavy Thanksgiving food I've consumed over the past few days. I never thought of spinach to pump up the broccoli flavor and color. Brilliant!

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    1. Thanks, Suzanne! Lots of heavy eating here, too. Definitely an "aha" moment to discover adding spinach - love the added veggie goodness it brings, too.

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  6. This is such an interesting combination, yet I can imagine how delicious it is! I love healthy soup like this. :)

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    1. Thanks, Nami! I'm a fan of healthy soups, too...so comforting and satisfying. Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

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  7. Great soup - it's almost like a warm smoothie in a bowl! Where did you get those bowls - love!

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    1. Ohh, a warm smoothie sounds terrific! I just saw a recipe for warm carrot and apple juice that sounds appealing. The little bowls are from Anthropologie - love their selection. Happy Friday to you!

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  8. Broccoli and apple?! I am intrigued...definitely an inspiring combination, but I can see how it would work. Broccoli soup is a fave, but I've never had it with a savory/sweet combo, so I'm particularly excited to try this. So glad you had a nice Holiday!

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    1. I hope you enjoy the soup, Erina! Looking at the rainy forecast I think we have lots of soup weather ahead. Have a wonderful weekend!

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  9. I've made a similar soup for a few years now - thanks for the reminder of this wonderful soup. I never knew about how spinach punches up the broccoli though. REALLY great information - I'm adding spinach from now on!

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    1. I was delighted to learn this bit about spinach, Susan. I hope you're enjoying lots of good soups these days! Have a great weekend!

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  10. Looks great! I love the idea of adding spinach to broccoli soup--I'm going to try it soon!

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    1. Thank you, Christina! I love the added healthy goodness of the spinach, too. Happy Friday to you!

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    2. Can you tell me where these beautiful bowls can be found? Lovely!

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    3. Hi Elizabeth! I found these bowls at Anthropologie. They have a wonderful selection and various sizes. Thanks for stopping by!

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