Last time we were at Trader Joe's I purchased two bags of frozen artichokes and one bag of frozen kale. They have been in the freeze since just before Christmas, it was time to use them. I also had a large wheel of Brie that I had brought for Christmas and forgot to put out. One of our local tea rooms, The Tea Cup, makes and awesome Brie and Artichoke Soup that I had been craving. I have never been able to convince them to share the recipe with me, so I had to try my hand at my own version. I began by thawing some of the artichokes and some kale.
I chopped some carrots, celery onion and garlic in my food processor and then cooked them in a little butter until tender. I stirred in some chicken broth, white pepper and salt and brought it all to a boil. I reduced the heat and simmered for about 15 minutes. While the soup was cooking, I chopped up the artichokes into bite size pieces. My soup seemed very thin, and the soup at the tea room is thick, so I thicken mine with a little flour combined with half and half. I added it to the soup and brought all to a boil again. I cooked the soup over medium heat until it was thick and bubbly.
The wheel of Brie was Sam's size, which I knew would be WAY to much.
I cut the wheel in half and that still looked like to much.
I ended up using 1/4 of the original wheel of Brie, guess I will just have to eat the rest, I LOVE Brie!!! I removed the rind and cubed the cheese. I added the cheese, some whipping cream, the artichokes and the kale to the soup, and cooked over medium low heat until the cheese was melted, stirring often so it did not scorch. This soup was close to the Tea Cup, but not exact. No worries, both Gordy and I loved it. Leftovers the next day were even better!
Brie and Artichoke Soup
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups half-and-half, light cream or whole milk
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whipping cream
4 ounces frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and cut into bite-size pieces
5 ounces frozen kale, thawed
5 ounces Brie or Camembert cheese, rind removed and cut up
In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion and garlic. Cook and stir till tender. Add broth, white pepper, and salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
In a large screw-top jar combine half-and-half and flour. Cover and shake well until smooth; stir into soup. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly.
Stir in whipping cream, artichoke hearts, kale and Brie. Cook and stir over medium-low heat about 5 minutes more or till heated through and cheese is melted. Stir often to make sure soup doesn't scorch on bottom of saucepan. Serve topped with croutons, optional.