Roasted Broccoli Soup with Spiced Pepitas

It's that time of year in the San Francisco Bay Area where the Spring weather is done flirting with its warmth to remind us that we're still a couple months away from the middle of summer! 

When it's overcast, windy, and even a little nippy (okay really only at 5am in the morning), I don't want to do almost anything. But cooking soup is always something that I can motivate myself to do.

Because I wasn't motivated enough to come up with my own recipe (inspiring sunshine, where are you?), I decided not to reinvent the wheel and share with you a delicious roasted broccoli soup from Serious Eat' recipe arsenal. It's comforting, warm, and has all of those comforting roasted flavors that you need to keep you going on a gloomy day!

Roasted Broccoli Soup with Spiced Pepitas

Adapted from Serious Eats

Time: 1 Hour
Serves 6-8

2 lbs broccoli, stalk trimmed and heads cut into florets
10 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp ground coriander seeds, divided
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1.5 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 quarts homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock or vegetable stock
Kosher salt
1 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard seed
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
Zest of 1 lemon

Preheat oven to 375°F. Toss broccoli with 2 tbsp olive oil and spread in an even layer on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Transfer to oven and roast until broccoli is tender and browned, about 25 minutes.

In a Dutch oven, heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon coriander seed and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add roasted broccoli, buttermilk, and just enough stock to barely cover vegetables. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat. Working in batches if necessary, transfer vegetables and liquid to a blender. Starting on the lowest speed and gradually increasing to the highest speed, blend broccoli until a smooth puree forms. Drizzle in 4 tbsp total olive oil while blender is running and return to a clean pot. Add as much of the remaining vegetable stock as necessary to thin to a creamy soup consistency. Season to taste with salt.

Meanwhile, lower oven to 350°F. In a mixing bowl, toss pepitas with 2 tablespoons olive oil, remaining 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander, cumin, mustard seed, and turmeric. Season with salt. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Let cool.

Scrape toasted spiced pepitas into a mixing bowl and stir in parsley, lemon zest, and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Warm the soup, then spoon it into bowls. Top with spiced pepitas and some of their oil. Serve immediately.