Broccoli Soup with Lemon and Ricotta

Before I was getting most of my recipe ideas from Pinterest, I had spent a considerable amount of time on Saveur magazine's list, "Sites We Love." I came across one that I thought had a really cute idea- pairing dishes with music. The site is called "Turntable Kitchen" and each of the recipes has a suggested musical accompaniment. This was of particular interest to me because I had just commented to a friend that I needed to expand my musical repertoire. I think somewhere around the age of 30 I noticed that I had been listening to the same artists over and over (and over again). And I wasn't really downloading anything new on my iPod. It's like, you hit a certain age, you are x number of years away from your college graduation, and you find yourself thinking "Who the hell is that?" while watching the Grammys. What I like about the aforementioned site is that you can find some inspirational ideas for the kitchen and satisfy that new-music craving too. 
Everyone in our family loved the soup, but you really have to season it well. Since there are so few ingredients, good seasoning is key to making this soup successful. 
What I like about the soup is that the real flavor of broccoli comes's not hidden under a pound of cheddar cheese (though, confession: there is a cup of cream in the pot). It feels light and the fresh ricotta and lemon add nice texture and acid. I served it with a thick slice of Italian bread from the Denver Bread Company. It totally hit the spot and it was the perfect lunch.
So, get this soup going while you listen to The Shins- Chutes Too Narrow...or just come up with a pairing that you like better. Enjoy! 
Broccoli Soup with Lemon and Ricotta (Courtesy of The Turntable Kitchen, adapted from Donna Hay)
Serves 4
1 tablespoon of butter
1 leek, thoroughly rinsed and thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 large or 2 small heads of broccoli (florets + stems), roughly chopped
4 cups of vegetable stock
approximately 1 cup (packed) of spinach
1 cup of heavy whipping cream (Next time I think I'll use a 1/2 cup and a little bit of milk)
1 tablespoon of freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon of lemon zest
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper (season the soup well)
1/2 cup of ricotta
1. Add the butter to a medium soup pot and heat it over medium-high heat, until it melts. Add the leek and garlic, and cook for about five minutes (until the leek has softened). Stir occasionally to keep the leek from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
2. Next, toss in the chopped broccoli and vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium-high heat for another 10 or so minutes (until the broccoli is fork-tender). Toss in the spinach, cooking for another few minutes.
3. Remove the pot from the heat and use a hand blender to whiz the soup into a puree.
4. Pour in the cream and stir until it is well-incorporated. Next, add in the lemon juice and zest, and season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
5. To serve, ladle the soup into bowls and top each with a hearty spoonful of ricotta.