Even though the summer heat is sneaking into our weather pattern, I still enjoy a bowl of potato soup. It is a comfort food with a comfortable budget cost. Fresh garlic bread, although it adds to the carb cost for that day’s diet, is always a tasty addition. A simple salad can round out the meal.
Hot Potato Soup
1/4 cup bacon drippings
1 cup chopped onion
½ cup chopped celery
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken broth
3 cups milk
4 cups peeled, finely diced new potatoes
1 cups grated Swiss cheese (Mild or sharp cheddar is a good alternative)
1 teaspoon powdered mustard
1 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
In a large kettle, heat bacon drippings. Saute onion and celery, until soft. Blend in flour over medium heat until golden brown. Stir in chicken broth and milk. Add potatoes, stirring until soup bubbles and thickens slightly. Simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Stir in cheese one handful at a time until melted and smooth. Season with mustard, salt, and pepper. Serve with a sprinkle of crispy bacon pieces and finely chopped parsley.
(For an interesting taste treat, try using baked potatoes instead of raw ones. Just cut down the simmering time as the potatoes are already tender!)
Homemade Potato Soup
A flavorful departure from the usual creamy potato soup. Goes well with crusty bread and a salad on a cold winter’s evening. Here’s hoping California actually gets some cold, rainy evenings this season!
8 strips of bacon cut into pieces
2 medium, brown onions, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, peeled and chopped
3 carrots, diced
3 cups potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 teaspoon dried Thyme
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 quarts chicken broth, fresh or canned
2 Bay leaves
Fresh or dried parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large, heavy, covered soup pot, cook bacon until crisp. Remove bacon to a paper towel to drain. Drain off all but about 3 tablespoons of bacon drippings. Add onions, celery, carrots, Bay leaves, and Thyme. Stir to blend. Cover and cook over low heat for 10 minutes. Add raw potatoes, stir to coat, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Push the vegetables to one side of the pan, then stir in flour, one tablespoon at a time. When the flour is incorporated, mix with the vegetables. Add the bacon, cook for an additional five minutes. Add one quart of chicken stock and stir until smooth. Add the rest of the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking until potatoes are soft. Add freshly chopped parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste.