Chef Vivian Howard uses olive oil and grated Parmesan cheese to enrich her lush broccoli soup. A drizzle of raisin puree adds lovely, sweet tang. Slideshow: More Vegetable Soup Recipes
Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the pine nuts in a pie plate and toast for about 8 minutes, until golden brown.
In a saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter. Add the garlic, leek, crushed red pepper and 2 teaspoons of salt and cook over moderate heat until the leek begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the stock and broccoli and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the broccoli is tender and the soup is slightly reduced, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan. Add the shallots and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Pour in the cider and vinegar and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the raisins and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Remove from the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Pour the raisins and their liquid into a blender. Add the cream cheese and blend to a smooth sauce. Pour into a small bowl.
In a blender, working in batches, puree the soup with the Parmigiano-Reggiano and olive oil. Season with pepper. Ladle the soup into shallow serving bowls, drizzle with some of the raisin sauce and sprinkle with the pine nuts. Serve immediately.