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Broccoli and Stilton Soup Recipe

1 carrot, julienned (cut into matchstick-sized pieces)
1 celery stalk, finely diced
2 bay leaves
sprig of thyme
1 small onion, chopped
2 tbsp flour
225g broccoli florets
50g butter
300ml chicken or strong vegetable stock
300ml dry white wine
2 tsp cornflour
100g Stilton cheese
150ml single cream
salt and black pepper to taste.

Start with the classic French stock. Melt 25g of the butter and add the onion, carrot, celery, bay leaves, thyme and the broccoli. Fry gently in a covered saucepan until the onion becomes translucent. At this stage remove the thyme and bay leaves.

When the frying is almost done add the remaining 25g of butter to another pan. When this has melted 2 heaped tablespoons of flour and a twist of black pepper. Cook for a minute to reduce the rawness of the flour. Add 100ml of milk and whisk to a smooth paste. Then add the chicken stock and the wine. All the while whisking to a smooth consistency.

Pour this thickened stock over the cooked vegetables and bring just to the point of boiling. Simmer gently for 8 to 10 minutes then allow to cool slightly and blend with a hand blender. At this stage crumble the cheese into the soup. Place back on the heat and keep heating until the cheese has molten (but do not allow to boil). Check the seasoning and serve.

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