Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christmas Tree Bento Lunch & Homemade Broccoli Cheese Soup

If I had to narrow today's theme down to one word, it would be BROCCOLI.  Yes folks, you heard me correctly.  This healthy veggie seems to have gotten a bit of a bad rap, but I'm here to vindicate this delicious green.  Many Moms tell me that their kids won't eat broccoli.  I agree that broccoli takes some Van White sales tactics and enthusiastic encouragement, but have you tried calling is something different?  In our house, broccoli is known as "baby trees."  My kids line the florets up on their plates and marvel at the cuteness of their little tree farms.  I let them dip it in ranch or cheese dip and today I used steamed broccoli to create a Christmas tree Bento lunch.  If all else fails, try masking this vegetable into some luscious homemade broccoli cheese soup...now who can resist that???

  Christmas Tree Bento Lunch

   xmas tree bento & beans 009
  • The tree is made from steamed broccoli florets.  I steam them just so they are not hard, but not until mushy.  Run them under cold water to stop the cooking and retain the fresh green color.  I formed the florets in a triangle shape and wrapped with leaf lettuce.  The leaf lettuce keeps the broccoli seperate so it does not touch or flavor the other food. 
  • The tiny colorful ornaments are royal icing decorations from Fancy Flours.
  • The star is cut from a carrot and decorated with a star food pick.
  • The fruit salad on either side is pineapple chunks and red grapes.
  • The tree trunk is a stack of Wheat Thin crackers.
  • The gifts are Colby jack cheese squares decorated with food picks and two royal icing presents from Fancy Flours. You get two of each in this assortment, so I used my two presents today.

Now for an easy homemade broccoli cheese soup that is so tasty!

You will need:


In a stockpot melt butter and cook onion, garlic and sherry until softened.


Add frozen broccoli and chicken broth.  Simmer until tender (about 10 min).


Reduce heat and stir in cheese cubes until melted.


Dissolve cornstarch in warm water. 


Add Cornstarch/water mixture and cream. 


Stirring until thick. 


Season with salt and pepper. (taste to see if you want to add any more).


Serve!


Oh, and don't forget that this soup would be great served in a bread bowl!
This post will show you how~
http://thelemonista.blogspot.com/2010/10/soup-in-bread-bowl-easy-meal-that-will.html

Broccoli Cheese Soup
1/2 cup butter
1 white onion chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup dry sherry
1 16oz package frozen broccoli
1 cup whole cream or half & half
16 oz Velveeta cheese, cubed (Velveeta Light will also work).
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 cup warm water
salt & pepper to taste.

In a stockpot melt butter and cook onion, garlic and sherry until softened.  Add frozen broccoli and chicken broth.  Simmer until tender (about 10 min.).  Reduce heat and stir in cheese cubes until melted.  In a separate bowl, dissolve cornstarch in warm water.  Add Cornstarch/water mixture and cream, stirring until thick.  Season with salt & pepper to taste and serve. 

Enjoy!

~The Lemonista

3 comments:

  1. I am now following your blog, love it! So happy I came across it. PS: I love broccolli soup! Thank you for sharing.

    Come stop by my blog if you would like :)
    Have a great day,
    Marci

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  2. Erin ... you are incredible. The soup looks delicious and for my broccoli eating daughter it'll be a hit!!!!

    How you do all this, I'll never know, but I'm sure glad you do!

    Blessings,
    Celeste

    ReplyDelete