We’ve had the “Chef Mickey” cookbook for several years (it came out in 2012), but we’ve never really tried a lot of the recipes. Well, quarantine 2020 has changed that! We decided to jump in head first and make our favorite Beer Cheese Soup from Le Cellier and a yummy Strawberry Basil Lemonade. Unfortunately, the cookbook does not have the recipe for the pretzel bread they serve at Le Cellier, so we went with a copy cat recipe.
I’ve listed each recipe below, with links and a few details/changes we made. Enjoy, and let us know if there are any other recipes you want us to try!
Chef Mickey Cookbook (Amazon Affiliate Link): https://amzn.to/337PyNy
“Chef Mickey” Beer Cheese Soup
Fun fact, in the book this is called Cheddar Cheese Soup. I’m guessing Mickey doesn’t want his name associated with the word Beer, but the recipe is clearly from Le Cellier, and it calls for beer, so, it’s Beer Cheese Soup. But Mickey is willing to offer a suggestion on a wine pairing of “Rich and round Cupcake Vineyards Merlot.” Maybe I’m wrong and it’s not a fun fact but just an odd speculation. Anyway…enjoy!
1/2 pound bacon chopped
1 medium red onion diced
3 celery ribs diced
4 tablespoons of butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock
4 cups of milk (we used 2%)
1 pound white cheddar cheese grated (we used Tillamook)
1 tablespoon Tabasco
1 tablespoon Worcestershire
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup pale ale
Scallions or chives for garnish (we didn’t garnish)
First, chop the veggies and bacon, and grate the cheese.
Once everything is chopped and grated, cook the bacon in a dutch oven until crispy. The “Chef Mickey” recipe does not call for removing and draining the bacon, but we did. Nobody wants soggy bacon in their soup.
After moving the bacon to a paper towel, cook the veggies in the bacon grease along with the butter, because, why not?
Once the veggies are cooked and translucent, add in the flour. This will make a veggie-flour mush that you stir around for about 4 minutes until the flour is browned. Once incorporated, add in the chicken stock.
With the chicken stock added, you basically have a massive roux that you simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring along the way. After that has simmered for 15 minutes, add the milk and continue to stir/incorporate/simmer.
Here’s where we strayed from the recipe. We’ve had Le Cellier Beer Cheese Soup loads of times, and I don’t remember it being chunky. Now, this could be because they dice things much smaller than us. But in any case, we didn’t want chunks, so we used an immersion blender. After about 2 minutes, we had a smooth, yummy, flavorful soup base.
Once you’re at this stage, all that is left are spices and cheese. Add in the Tabasco and Worcestershire, along with the pound of grated cheese. Salt and pepper to taste (we were pretty liberal). Remove from heat and stir in the pale ale.
Garnish with whatever you’d like, we ended up putting a bunch of bacon on top. Be careful not to drop any bacon. If bacon falls, call in the cleaning crew.
Copy cat Pretzel Bread from Le Cellier
The rumor is that Disney imports their pretzel bread directly from Canada and that it’s made by Mennonites there. Apparently, guests have asked for the recipe in the restaurant and that’s what they’ve been told. We haven’t verified this, but we wanted pretzel bread with the soup so we went with this copy cat recipe from Magical Recipes.
2 and 3/4 cups bread flour
1 envelope quick-rising yeast
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of hot water
Cornmeal (so the pretzels don’t stick to the baking sheet)
8 cups of water
1/4 cup baking soda
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 egg white (we used a carton of liquid egg whites)
This recipe requires 2 rounds of rising, so plan ahead because everything else comes together much faster. We followed the recipe as written on Magical Recipes except we attempted to make the pretzel sticks that they serve at Le Cellier instead of pretzel rolls. They were great, but they did taste very yeasty. If I were going to do it again, I might try the rolls to see if that makes a difference, or I might try another recipe for pretzel bread. Either way, this was yummy and we called it a copy cat close-enough to enjoy success.
The final flourish was the Strawberry Basil Lemonade that you can get at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World. We liked it just as great with and without the adult component! The recipe below is for 1 drink. We tripled this in our video to have 2 adult versions and one kid-friendly.
1 ounce strawberry daiquiri mix or strawberry puree
2 strawberries, hulled and cut into quarters
2 basil leaves, torn in half
4 ounces of lemonade
2 ounces of vodka
Combine in a pitcher (or cocktail shaker) and serve!
And voila! A magical meal at home! EPCOT’s Le Cellier Beer Cheese Soup, Copy cat pretzel bread, and Strawberry Basil Lemonade! YUM!