I adapted this recipe from The Craft of Stone Brewing Co.
But I knew I wanted a chunkier soup, so immediately decided I needed to add broccoli and potatoes.
Roasted Garlic, Potato, and Broccoli Beer Cheese Soup
1 cup unsalted butter
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 large yellow onion, diced
8 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups vegetable stock
11/4 cup (14 fluid ounces) darker/higher alcohol content beer (I used some my spouse made)
1 3/4 cup whole milk
3 heads roasted garlic
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 1/4 pounds sharp white Cheddar cheese, grated (a little bit less is okay. I mixed it up and added smoked yellow cheddar, too)
2 small heads of broccoli, chopped
6-8 small potatoes
Melt 3/4 cup of the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour, whisking briskly to avoid lumps. Cook, stirring frequently, until the flour takes on a light blond color, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Meanwhile, steam the potatoes for 4-5 minutes.
Melt the remaining 1/4 cup butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Stir in the onion and minced garlic and cook just until the garlic is aromatic, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the broccoli and potatoes, cook for another minute or so. Add the vegetable stock, IPA, and milk. When the liquid begins to simmer, stir in the garlic,paprika, and cumin. Whisk in the flour mixture. Add the cheese a handful at a time, whisking after each addition, until melted and smooth.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, garnishing each serving with some of the chives or thyme or whatever floats your boat.