With over 100 company-owned and franchised restaurants throughout the Eastern and Midwestern United States, RARE Hospitality International Inc. has a fast-growing presence in the steakhouse segment of the dining industry. This relative newcomer to the market--at scarcely 15 years in business, compared to such 1960s-era chains as Ponderosa and Bonanza--RARE's irreverent style of "cowboy cuisine" shook up the segment. By 1996, the company's core chain of LongHorn Steakhouses numbered 81 units. Following its initial public offering in 1992, the company acquired the Bugaboo Creek Steak House chain and its smaller The Capital Grille group of pricey eateries. Founder George W. McKerrow, Jr. continued to serve the company as chairman through the mid-1990s.
Broccoli Cheese Soup
The Broccoli Cheese soup served at Longhorn Steakhouse is a bit different than what is served at most restaurants because it is made with white cheddar and Asiago cheeses.
BROCCOLI ASIAGO CHEDDAR SOUP
Longhorn Steakhouse Copycat Recipe
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 cups half and half
3 cups low sodium chicken broth
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4 cups broccoli florets (about 1 head)
2 cups (8 oz.) grated white cheddar cheese, plus more for garnish
1/2 cup (4 oz.) grated asiago cheese
Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the flour and cook until golden, 3 to 4 minutes, then gradually whisk in the half and half until smooth. Add the chicken broth, bay leaves and nutmeg, then season with salt and pepper and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, uncovered, until thickened, about 20 minutes. Add the broccoli to the broth mixture and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Discard the bay leaves.
Puree the soup in batches in a blender until smooth. Return to the pot. (Or puree the soup in the pot with an immersion blender). Add the cheese to the soup and whisk over medium heat until melted. Add up to 3/4 cup water if the soup is too thick. Ladle into the bread bowls and garnish with cheese.