Wisconsin Beer Cheese Soup
(American hearty cheese soup)
The American state of Wisconsin is known for its dairies and breweries. Cheese and beer find an apt marriage in this rich and satisfying soup that will ward off even the most numbing winter chill.
4 to 6 servings
- Butter -- 4 tablespoons
- Onion, finely chopped -- 1
- Celery, finely chopped -- 2 stalks
- Carrot, finely chopped -- 1
- Flour -- 1/3 cup
- Chicken stock -- 1 cup
- Pilsner beer -- 1 (12-ounce) bottle or can
- Milk or half-and-half -- 1 cup
- Worcestershire sauce -- 2 teaspoons
- Dry mustard -- 1 teaspoon
- Sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded -- 1/2 pound
- Salt and pepper -- to taste
- Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium flame. Add the onion, celery and carrots and saute until the onions are translucent and softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the top and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.
- Whisk in the chicken stock and beer, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are cooked through and tender.
- Add the half-and-half, Worcestershire sauce and dry mustard and return to a simmer. Remove from heat and slowly add the Cheddar cheese, stirring until it is melted and smooth. Take care not to overheat the soup after the cheese is added or it could curdle.
- Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and serve hot in bowls with croutons, cheese-flavored crackers or popcorn to garnish.
Beer Cheese Soup Variations
- Instead of butter, saute about 8 slices of chopped bacon and use the bacon fat to saute the vegetables.
- Some recipes add potatoes. Peel and dice 1 or 2 russet potatoes and simmer them in the stock and beer until they are cooked through. Then proceed with the recipe.
- For meaty soup, stir in 1 pound of browned Polish sausage, cut into rounds, at the end.
- Don't use a dark beer for this recipe. It will make the soup taste bitter.