Buffy's Cheesy Vegetable Soup

2 Cloves of Garlic-Minced
1 Celery stalk – Diced Fine
1 Med-Large Carrot - Diced Fine
½ Cup Red Bell Pepper - Diced
1 Small onion (any kind, pick your favorite!) - Diced fine
2 Cups chopped broccoli
2 Cups low sodium chicken broth

Heat medium pan with 1 tablespoon of butter or oil, and saute the garlic, celery, carrots, red bell pepper, and onion until they are just tender, approximately 3-5 minutes.
Add sauteed vegitables to cheese sauce (recipe below) and stir.
Next stir in the broccoli florets, and chicken broth.
Simmer on low heat stirring frequently until broccoli is cooked tender through (approximately 5-8 min).
Serve hot with a slice of bread, salad, or sandwich.
You can always use a bag of frozen vegetables if you are pressed for time, and the amount of chicken broth can be changed depending on your desired thickness.
Add in cooked ground beef/ turkey or some cooked and sliced sausage to create an even heartier, heartwarming soup.

Basic Cheese Sauce (soup base)
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
generous amount of fresh ground pepper
1 generous teaspoon dijon mustard
pinch of paprika
2 cups cheddar cheese shredded

Melt butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium low heat. Once butter is melted and has stopped bubbling whisk in 1/4 cup flour until a smooth paste (roux) forms. Cook, stirring constantly for 2-3 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste. Stir in the pepper, mustard and paprika. Gradually whisk in the milk, stirring constantly. Keep stirring until mixture thickens and is bubbly. Stir in the shredded cheese, again stirring constantly until cheese is completely melted and sauce is smooth.
Makes 6-8 servings.
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