There's nothing like a good soup to warm you up on a cold day. I love soup, my family, not so much (unless it's filled with meat). So we don't eat soup as often as I'd like to, but sometimes I'm able to sneak one on the table.

Broccoli soup

2 tbsp olive oil
5 green onions, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
½ cup chopped celery
3 cups beef or vegetable broth
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 ½ cups broccoli florets
½ cup sour cream
1 cup milk
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
¼ cup fresh thyme
pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large sauce pan. Sauté over medium heat, the onions, garlic and celery, until the celery is tender. Add broth, potatoes and broccoli and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer about 20 minutes. Transfer soup to a food processor or blender and purée to desired consistency. Return to saucepan. With heat on medium-low, add sour cream, milk and cheese. Stir until all the cheese is melted. Heat through, but do not allow to boil as sour cream will curdle. Serve with fresh ground pepper.

Squash soup

This recipe is from the LCBO's Food and Drink magazine, it's just delicious!

1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
3 tbsp chopped shallots
1 leek, white part only, chopped
1 tsp garlic, chopped
1 cup potato, chopped and peeled
4 cups vegetable stock
4 cups squash, chopped
1/2 cup whipping cream
salt and pepper

Heat vegetable oil over high heat. Add onion and sauté until softened. Add shallots, leek and garlic. Stir together for another 2 minutes. Add potatoes, stock and squash. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, until vegetables are soft, about 25 minutes. Purée in food processor until smooth. Return to heat, add whipping cream and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper.

Garnish with sautéed chanterelle mushrooms.

Cream of Mushroom

1 1/2 cups sliced white mushrooms
1 1/2 cups sliced portobello mushrooms
10 dried Chinese mushrooms
1 cup boiling water
1 cup green onions, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup butter
3 tbsp flour
3/4 cup white wine
1 tsp dried thyme
3/4 cup chopped parsley
3 cups broth (beef, chicken, veggie...)
salt and pepper
1 cup table cream

Pour boiling water over dried mushrooms and set aside until all other mushrooms are chopped. Remove rehydrated mushrooms from liquid (reserve liquid) and slice.

Heat oil and butter in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add all mushrooms and onions. Fry until tender. Add flour and stir constantly for about 1 minute, scraping up the brown bits off the bottom of the pot. Add wine, thyme and reserved mushroom liquid. Add the parsley, broth and salt and pepper. Bring to boil, then reduce to a simmer for about 20 minutes, until thickened.

Stir in the cream and serve.