Broccoli-Leek Soup with Basil Pesto. A creamy, comforting soup for drizzly spring days. And it comes together in just 30 minutes! —Olaiya Land | Milly's Kitchen
butter (or olive oil)
large leek, halved lengthwise and sliced into ¼-inch half moons
Coarse sea salt, to taste
3 to 4 cups
chicken or vegetable stock
basil pesto (high quality store-bought or homemade)
(2 tablespoons) cream cheese
Good quality olive oil, to garnish
Pinch ground chile flakes or cayenne, to garnish
fried or poached eggs, to serve (optional)
(1 packed cup) basil leaves
(¼ cup) grated parmesan cheese
toasted pine nuts
or more good olive oil
Splash of lemon juice
Pinch sea salt
In This Recipe
For most pureed soups, I like a super-smooth texture so I puree them in a blender and sometimes even strain them. For this soup, I prefer a more rustic texture so I opt for my hand blender and don’t process it for very long.
- If you don’t have a hand blender, you can puree the soup in batches in a blender. If you go this route, take care not to fill your blender jar more than ⅔ full, otherwise the steam from the hot soup can blow the lid off your blender. Getting burned by hot soup is no fun--trust me on this one.
Cut the florets off the broccoli stalks and set aside. Trim any brown spots off the stalks, halve lengthwise if thick and slice ¼-inch thick.
Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed stock pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the sliced leeks, broccoli stems and a generous pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until the broccoli stems are just starting to become tender, about 5 minutes. Add the broccoli florets and 3 cups of the stock. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the soup is hot and the florets are just tender, about 5 minutes more. The goal is to keep the soup bright green and for the broccoli to keep some of its texture, so take care not to overcook it.
Remove the soup from the heat and stir in the pesto, cream and cream cheese. Puree with a hand blender until there are no large chunks of broccoli or leek. Add a little more stock if you’d like your soup a bit thinner. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Spoon hot soup into serving bowls and top with a fried or poached egg (if using). Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with chile. Serve immediately.
Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until the pesto reaches desired consistency. Thin with a little olive oil if desired. Taste and adjust salt and lemon to taste.