Christmas cookies, holiday brunch, and all the toffee you can eat: if you read food magazines and blogs in December you could be excused for thinking that this is all that's on the menu. I don't know about you, but I actually need to eat some dinner in between the treats, so let's talk about the food we eat when we're not cooking a holiday dinner or baking Christmas cookies.
This week we're going to offer you a few quick plans for your dinners — menus you can make after work or ahead of busy holiday plans. First up: hello, broccoli cheddar soup!
What You Need
This broccoli cheddar soup looks (and tastes) like it simmered all day, but it's actually a quick recipe. You'll need a leek, a potato (or two, if you like a thicker soup), broccoli, vegetable or chicken stock, and cheddar cheese.
The biscuits are classic and quick. All you need are some baking staples (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and butter) plus buttermilk.
And since you already have buttermilk, why not make a creamy ranch dressing for some fresh greens or spinach. Homemade ranch dressing is such a treat, and I like the extra dose of creaminess with a vegetable-forward main dish like this soup. You can whisk it up this dressing the last minute. Swag up the salad with some pickled beets, a handful of nuts, or chopped chives, if you like.
Now that you have your shopping list, the plan is straightforward. It looks something like this:
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Slice and cook the leek in a large pot.
- Peel and chop the potato and add to the pot with the leek. Add the stock.
- While the soup comes to a boil, chop the broccoli and put in the oven to roast.
- While the broccoli is roasting, make the biscuit dough.
- Bake the biscuits (at the same temperature as the broccoli).
- Add the broccoli to the soup and simmer until tender.
- Puree the soup and stir in the cheese, then return to low heat until ready to eat.
- Make the ranch dressing and toss with the greens.
- Set out salad plates, soup bowls, and honey for the biscuits.
Very doable, right? Probably in an hour or less. And if your biscuits or salad need to wait until the end, no worries — the soup can simmer gently while it waits.
What's on your dinner plan for the week? Do you have anything you especially like to eat in this crazy time between Thanksgiving and Christmas?
(Image credits: The Kitchn; Dana Velden)