Saturday, October 15, 2011

Comfort Food: Potato Soup

It's that time of the year. We pull out the sweaters and jackets, brush off the moth balls and mend the holes. Check the fit of hats and mittens and prepare for the cooler weather months! It's time to brush of the wooden rocking chair and sit on the front porch with a mug of coffee or hot cider. Watching the wind play with the vibrant colored leaves. Or even to put a fire in the fireplace, watch some football or just enjoy a quiet evening at home!

Yep, it's that perfect time of the year when hearts warm as the weather grows colder. So here is my favorite Baked Potato Soup recipe to warm the body!

My mom would make this for the family and oh man could we put this huge pot of soup away! Between my dad, two brothers (who have hollow legs!), two sisters, myself and the many friends we always had over, this soup never lasted long and I was lucky to get a second bowl! Yes, it's simply just that good.

Baked Potato Soup

6-8 Large potatoes                    
 Bake at 400 degrees till done. About 1 hour. Peel  cube.
 Or cover halved potatoes with water in a large pan and barely boil for 40 minutes.
 OR microwave 4 at a time for 20 minutes. then peel and cook.
(the microwave is my favorite way taught to me by my mother in law!)

While Potatoes are Baking:

In a Large soup pot:                
 (Large....meaning HUGE this makes A LOT of soup.
Invest in a Tall non stick pot! Well worth the money!)

2 sticks REAL butter          
1 cup chopped onion            
1/2-1 center cut ham steak diced small    >
 Saute onions and ham until onions are clear.

1 cup flour                              
Gradually add flour stirring continuously.

2 quarts warm milk              
Add and stir constantly to keep smooth.

Add Potatoes and salt and pepper.

Heat through!

Invest in a wooden spoon!!!
Microwave milk.
Invest in a tall non stick pot.
Try smoking the ham before adding it to the soup.
Use REAL stick butter.
Serve with Sharp grated cheese. I actually add 1 lb of shredded cheese TO the soup!

Ok, if for some reason this doesn't make enough do the following:
mix 1/2 stick melted butter with 1/2 cup flour, and then add to warm soup. Stir well then add 1 quart of warm milk and adjust seasonings!
Mix the extra butter and flour together first before adding them to the soup so the flour doesn't clump in the soup.

Suggested seasonings and how to season.
I enjoy using Paprika, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder (even proportions)  and Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning.
Don't know what it is...

Add the seasonings to the ham and onions as you saute them. You won't need extra salt! Add pepper after the soup is made. But taste the soup first! Don't just add it because you think you need it.

I really hope my little notes have helped! One of my favorite comfort winter foods! If you have any questions be sure to e-mail me or tweet me!
Dottie ^_^

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