This Cream of Green Chile Soup is based on one served at Duarte's Tavern in Pescadero, California. Duarte's is also famous for their Cream of Artichoke Soup,. For the indecisive among us they are willing to give you a bowl with half artichoke and half green chile. The amount of cream in this recipe may scare some people. I'm not usually one for adding so much cream to soups, but this soup is so greatly improved and transformed by the creamy addition that I put in the full amount. Try it with less, if you must. In any case, serve it with bread, warm corn tortillas, or tortilla chips.
Note that this soup is all about the chiles. If you use a different kind, you may well end up with a soup that is entirely too spicy. This version is spicy, yes, but in a gentle way. If you want it truly spicy, try adding a jalapeño or serrano chile to the mix.
- Roast the chiles until they're browned all over. You can do this using either the stove-top method or the broiler method. Set the chiles aside for at least 15 minutes to cool; then peel off the blistered skin. Pull off the stems and remove any seeds, then put the chiles in a large bowl to collect any juices.
- Peel, trim, and chop the onion.
- In a medium pot over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the onions and salt. Cook, stirring, until the onions are soft, about 3 minutes. While they cook, peel and chop the garlic; add it to the pan and cook, stirring, another minute or so until the mixture is very fragrant.
- Add the chiles and broth (3 cups for a thicker soup, 4 cups for a thinner soup) to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a steady simmer and cook until the vegetables are extremely soft and flavors have blended, about 15 minutes.
- Whirl the mixture in a blender or food processor until super smooth. Whirl for at least 2 minutes (this may seem like a long time) to achieve a velvety texture.
- Return the mixture to the pot and stir in the cream. Gently heat until the soup is heated through. Add more salt to taste, if you like.