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Light Chicken Broccoli Alfredo Soup (Lower Fat)

1/4 cup chopped sweet onion
3 large garlic cloves, minced (1/2 Tbls)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup light butter
3/4 cup flour, divided
4 cups chicken broth
1 quart fat-free half-and-half
1 1/2 cups reduced-fat parmesan cheese, cheese topping
2 cups water
16 ounces broccoli florets, prepared
3 cups boneless chicken breasts, cooked and diced
1/4 teaspoon white pepper (to taste)
1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
1 dash nutmeg (optional)
6 ounces farfelle bow tie pasta, cooked according to package directions
1 In a heavy stockpot over medium heat, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil for 2-3 minutes. Add light butter and 1/4 cup flour and cook, stirring, for another 2-3 minutes until bubbly. Add remaining 1/2 cup of flour to a small amount of chicken broth and stir to remove lumps. Gradually whisk in flour and broth combo, plus remaining chicken broth and half & half; cook, stirring frequently, until thickened.
2 Meanwhile, steam broccoli (I use the steamer bag in the microwave) or cook broccoli in a separate pan with 2 cups of water just until form and not soft. Remove from heat and do not drain cooking water from broccoli.
3 Add Parmesan cheese topping to soup-base in stockpot; cook over low heat, stirring, just until cheese is melted; add steamed broccoli and 2 cups of water (or cooked broccoli along with its cooking water), chicken, seasonings, and bow tie pasta to the stockpot; heat through.

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