Spicy Potato Sausage Soup

Servings: 8 (3 Quarts)
1 pound bulk mild or sweet Italian sausage
2 tablespoons butter, cubed
1 small onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
5 cups chicken broth
4 cups whole milk
3 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
5 cups fresh broccoli florets
6 ounces Henning’s Dragon’s Breath Cheddar cheese, shredded (1 1/2 cups)
6 ounces Henning’s Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (1 1/2 cups)
Salt and pepper to taste
Additional shredded Henning’s Monterey Jack cheese
Optional Toppings: cooked and crumbled bacon, chopped green onions, sliced jalapenos, crispy shallots and sour cream

Cooking Directions:
Cook sausage in a large skillet over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Set aside.
Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion; cook and stir for 4-6 minutes or until crisp-tender. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add garlic; cook and stir for 1 minute.
Gradually stir in chicken broth and milk. Add potatoes. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally. Cool slightly.
Remove half of the potatoes; set aside. Process remaining soup, in batches, in a blender or with an immersion blender until smooth. Return to the pan. Warm soup over medium-low heat. Stir in broccoli. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until broccoli is tender, stirring frequently.
Reduce heat to low. Stir in reserved sausage and potatoes; heat through. Remove from the heat. Gradually stir in cheddar and monterey jack until melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Garnish with additional shredded monterey jack and toppings as desired.