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If you’ve never had garlic soup before, don’t be scared off by the idea. The garlic flavor is present, but it’s quite mellow and sweet after cooking. The soup is barely thick, with more of a “coats the back of a spoon” texture than, say, the thickness of a creamy potato soup—making it perfect for dunking toasted breadsticks into.
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 375°F. Finely chop 1 ounce bread, and set aside. Cut remaining 4 ounces bread into 16 sticks, or soldiers. Stir together butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a small bowl; brush evenly over all sides of breadsticks. Set aside any remaining butter-oil mixture. Arrange breadsticks in a single layer on an aluminum foil–lined baking sheet. Bake at 375°F, turning occasionally, until evenly toasted, about 12 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil and any remaining butter-oil mixture in a large saucepan over medium-low. Add shallots, garlic, and carrot. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender when pierced with a fork, 10 to 15 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high. Add wine; cook until liquid is mostly evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add chopped bread, stock, salt, and thyme; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer, uncovered, until vegetables are very tender and bread has dissolved, about 10 minutes.
Discard thyme sprigs. Pour chicken stock mixture into a blender; add half-and-half. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Process until very smooth, about 1 minute. Return chicken stock mixture to pan over medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until warmed through, about 2 minutes. Ladle soup into each of 4 bowls; garnish with pepper, if desired. Serve with breadsticks.