What makes this soup different than others is the roasting of the broccoli, potatoes, and onion before blending. Roasting concentrates the flavors of the vegetables and creates a nuttiness that compliments the Stilton cheese’s buttery, rich, and peppery aroma and flavor. Despite the extra step, the simplicity remains. Even though the vegetables are oven-roasted, they are all cooked together, and then the roasting pan itself is deglazed on the stove. —Belle Année
broccoli florets (about 2 heads)
medium yellow onions (about 85 grams)
Salt and pepper, to taste
low sodium chicken broth, divided
stalks broccoli rapini, for garnish
crumbled Stilton blue cheese (plus some for garnish)
Where necessary, cut the potatoes into halves or quarters so they are approximately 1-inch cubed. Trim the broccoli so that you have florets about twice the size of the potatoes. Slice the onion into half-moons. Combine them all in a single layer on a sheet pan with high edges and sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle with the olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes, flipping once with a spatula about 20 minutes in.
In a small saucepan, bring half of the chicken broth to a boil. Drop the broccoli rapini into the boiling stock for 15 seconds. Remove with tongs and set aside. Turn the heat down to low.
Remove the sheet pan from the oven and place over two burners turned to medium-high. Add the other half of the chicken broth to the sheet pan and, using a spatula, scrape up any bits that have stuck to the pan.
Working in batches, transfer the roasted vegetables and the liquid in the sheet pan to a food processor or powerful blender and blend for 60 seconds, or until fully puréed. (If your mixture is too thick to process, add in some of the warm chicken broth that has been waiting patiently on the stove. Continue to use that stock through the process to thin out your soup as desired.) Pour into a clean pot and place over low heat on the stove.
Add the crumbled blue cheese to the pot and stir through the soup until it mostly dissolves. Then thoroughly whisk in the tablespoon of crème fraîche.
Serve in generous bowls topped with crumbled Stilton and chopped broccoli rapini for garnish, accompanied with warm crusty bread.