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Broccoli and Cheddar Chowder

  Makes 6 servings, 1 cup each
  Prep Time: 45 minutes
  Total Time: 1 hour 
  Ease of Preparation: Easy

 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
 1 cup onion, chopped 
 3/4 cup carrot, diced
 1/2 cup celery, diced
 1 large potato, peeled and diced
 2 cloves garlic, minced
 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
 2 14-ounce cans vegetable broth, or reduced-sodium chicken broth
 8 ounces broccoli crowns, (see Tip), cut into 1-inch pieces,  stems and florets separated
 1 cup shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese
 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream


1. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot and celery; cook, stirring, until the onion and celery soften, 5 to 6 minutes. Add potato and garlic; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in flour, dry mustard and cayenne; cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes.

2. Add broth and broccoli stems; bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to medium. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Stir in florets; simmer, covered, until the broccoli is tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer 2 cups of the chowder to a food processor and pulse until desired consistancy; return to the pan.  Do this until all of the chowder has the consistancy you want. 

3. Stir in Cheddar and sour cream; cook over medium heat, stirring, until the cheese is melted and the chowder is heated through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt.

Tips & Tricks:
Tip: Prepare through Step 2. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 2 months.

Nutritional Notes: per serving: 205 calories; 9 g fat (4 g sat, 3 g mono); 21 mg cholesterol; 23 g carbohydrates; 9 g protein; 4 g fiber; 508 mg sodium; 436 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (61% daily value), Vitamin A (64% dv), Calcium (34% dv).