Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Potato Soup

I found this recipe on one of my favorite blogs called The Frugal Girl. She has amazing recipes and spectacular pictures to go with them. Unlike my pictures....HEY it was dark and I have a old kitchen! Anyways I thought I would throw my green mind into this recipe and show you how you can make it a little bit more healthy. Whether you make it her way or mine, its just an amazing soup. Loooooove it! Oh and become a reader of her blog. She is very inspiring.

Her recipe called for 4 large potatoes but all I had were organic Yukon Gold medium sized ones. I say use what you have. I simply wrapped them in aluminum foil (which you can recycle) and baked them at 350 degrees for one hour.

When the potatoes have been cooking for about 30 minutes you can start the rest of the soup. Cook up about 1/4 a pound of nitrate free bacon. I buy mine for $2.99 per pound at New Seasons which is super cheap. They don't always have the ends and pieces (which is why it's cheaper) so when you see it buy a bunch.

Cook the bacon till its nice and crispy. Take the bacon bits out and set aside.You will want to keep a tiny bit of the fat to coat the bottom of the pan. Strain off the rest in your bacon fat reserve.

Bacon fat is liquid gold and can be used in cooking other dishes. Keep it! I keep mine in a vintage glass dish. It sits on my counter under my cook book holder. I use this instead of oil to cook veggies when I make soup or when i'm making scrambled eggs. Mmmm. At this point take your potatoes out of the oven and let them cool while your finishing the soup.

Now you add your butter. I'm talking REAL butter not that fake almost plastic stuff. Once the butter is melted add your flour so it can crisp up a bit and add flavor. Let it cook for about a minute stirring every few seconds. Then slowly add your milk/water mixture and consistently stir. Once you have added all the milk/water mixture let it cook for a few minutes. It will start to thicken up. If its too thick add a tiny bit more milk. It should be a tiny bit runny because when you add the potato it will thicken up more.

Take a fork and mash the potatoes a bit. I like my soup a bit chunky so I just mash them half way.  Since i'm using Yukon there is no need to peel off the skins.  Don't forget to recycle that aluminum foil when your done!

And this is where you throw back in the bacon and potatoes. Once you have mixed it (don't mix too much) add in salt to taste.  You can now add cheese and sour cream in if you would like. Honestly most the time I don't add the cheese and sour cream because I forget and no one had even noticed. It's still thick and yummy. That's it your done! This soup will easily feed a family of 6 and even enough for the hubby to take to work the next day. Or after the kids are in bed and your tummy wants it.

Potato Soup

4 large potatoes
2/3 cup of butter
2/3 cup of unbleached flour
6 cups of milk (or 3 cups of milk with 3 cups of water which is what I do)
3/4 tsp of salt
4 chopped onion (optional)
1 1/4 cup of cheese (optional)
1 cup of sour cream (optional)

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