Combine 2 cups stock and rice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes. Remove from heat; let stand 5 minutes. Place rice mixture and milk in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth.
Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion; sauté 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds. Add broccoli and salt; cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add remaining 2 cups stock; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or just until broccoli is tender. Add rice mixture; simmer 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Place 2 cups soup in blender; process until smooth. Return pureed soup to pan. Add pepper and 4 ounces cheese; stir until cheese melts. Divide soup evenly among 6 bowls; sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 ounce cheese.
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I have no objection to the rice taste other reviewers mentioned. Maybe that's because I used regular whole-grain brown rice and not instant. I found the soup creamy and filling without tasting too decadent. But the addition I made that put it over the top was a healthy shake of smoked paprika! Quite amazing.
Like some of the other reviewers, we could taste the rice in the final dish, which was a little weird. It also didn't seem any creamier than other CL broccoli soups we've tried, so I won't be trying the rice technique again.
I really liked this. I thought it had great flavor & plenty of seasoning. I didn't change anything on this recipe. It did take a bit of time to get the rice to break down. I will definitely make this again.
I didn't think the soup had very much flavor. I could really taste the rice, which was used for the creaminess. I added some salt after it was in the bowl, and that seemed to help some. I might try it again, but with some additional spices, and/or more onion and garlic.
This is a wonderful recipe- very flavorful and pretty filling. I made it exactly as directed and wouldn't change anything. It's an ideal lunch meal, although I doubt it would be enough for dinner on it's own- at least in my family.
I was very skeptical about this recipe, but since I love broccoli cheese soup and never eat it because it can be very caloric and unhealthy, I thought I would try this lighter/healthier version. Even the picture in the magazine looked brownish and lumpy, but I still tried it. Wow, I was amazed! I used pre-cooked brown rice and added a little broth to it and microwaved it for about 5 minutes to get it mushy, then followed the recipe exactly. The rice mixture pureed out very smoothly and the soup had a really nice, thick, creamy consistency.
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