This is a lighter version with so much flavor.
2 broccoli crowns
2 ribs celery finely chopped
1 small vidalia onion finely chopped
2 small carrots peeled and finely chopped
4 tablespoons margarine
1/3 cup flour
2 cups water plus reserved broccoli water
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon ground bay leaves
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
salt to taste
1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar
The first step is to wash the broccoli. Put it in a pan of water and boil it until it is bright green in color and fork tender. This takes 5-8 minutes.
Next up… Saute the onion, carrot, and celery in margarine on low for about 10-15 minutes. It should be very cooked and mushy but not burned.
Add in the spices. Cook 1 minute. Add flour. Slowly stir in 2 cups of water stirring constantly. Simmer on low. Remove broccoli from water and cool. Rough chop the broccoli and add it in with the other veggies. Add the heavy cream. Add the cheese and stir until melted. Continue to simmer 10-15 minutes. Add broccoli water as needed to thin soup. I used 2 cups. Use either an immersion blender or food processor to puree the soup to the desired texture. If using a food processor, remove small amounts of soup then puree them, and return them to the pot. Salt to taste.
After the puree it looks like this.