Cream of Artichoke Soup
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
8 cups well-seasoned chicken broth
1 cup evaporated milk or heavy cream
Salt and white pepper
1 package frozen artichoke hearts
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Cook frozen artichoke hearts in salted water according to package instructions. Allow to cool in their cooking liquid and purée in blender with 1 or 2 cups of their cooking broth. Set aside.
In a Dutch oven, heat butter and add flour. Cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes, but do not let it brown. Slowly add 2 cups of the broth and the evaporated milk or cream. Cook until smooth, stirring often. Add remaining broth, then season to taste.
Strain puréed artichokes into chicken stock mixture and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often. Add nutmeg and correct the seasoning.
Serve laced with dry sherry and topped with fresh garlic croutons.