Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots and celery and season with salt and cayenne pepper. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes, or until they begin to soften. Add the broccoli and cook, stirring, for 3 more minutes. Add the water and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Simmer for 30 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Add the cream and simmer another 10 minutes. With a hand-held blender, puree the soup. Add 1 1/2 cups of the gruyere cheese and stir until it melts completely. Check for seasoning. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with a little of the remaining Gruyere cheese and Essence. Serve with crusty bread.
Yield: 6 servings