Sunday, February 18, 2007

Cream of Potato Soup

This is a very soothing soup. It's cozy and hearty and warming. It will not give you a hug, tell you you've lost weight or do your laundry for you. But, when you need the gustatory equivalent of a cozy seat by a warm fire, this can work. This recipe makes 4-5 generous servings.

Cream of Potato Soup
  • 1 medium onion, chopped coarse
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped coarse
  • 6-7 cups of chicken broth, vegetable, water w/a boullion cube - (tonight I used 4 cups of homemade chicken broth, 2 cups of water and an Italian boullion cube)
  • 4 medium (about 2.5 pounds total) baking potatoes, peeled and chopped into largeish chunks - about 8 pieces per potato
  • 1/2 -1 cup chicken broth, milk, cream, yogurt or buttermilk - to thin the soup
Saute onion and garlic with a few tablespoons of oil and/or butter in a large soup pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat until softened. Add liquid (broth and/or water) to soup pot and bring liquid to a boil.

When the liquid is boiling, add the potatoes. Simmer the potatoes until soft all the way through. Use a blender or immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth.
Depending on how you like your soup, you may need/want to add some more broth or some milk or cream to thin the soup down to the appropriate "soupy" consistency.

Serve with your choice of garnishes. Garnishes can include:
  • Shredded or crumbled cheese: cheddar, montery jack, blue, goat
  • Sliced scallions or chives
  • Bacon, pancetta or ham, cut small and cooked crisp
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Minced herbs: parsley, dill, oregano, thyme
  • Potato skins: peel your potatoes, toss the biggest peeling pieces with oil or melted butter, and crisp in a 400 degree oven for about 10 minutes
  • Etc., etc., etc.

This week our soup was garnished with parsley, scallions, pancetta, blue cheese and crispy potato skins.


Stefan Jones said...

I "found" a couple of pounds of stew meat at the back of the freezer yesterday. Wanting to make room, I defrosted it and looked up a slow-cooker recipe. I settled on "Beef Stifado," for which I had all of the ingredients but cumin and red wine. (I have them now.)

I thought I'd make a greek dinner out of it, and stopped by Trader Joe's for spinach pies and stuff grape leaves.

On the way out, I played the name of the main course over in my mind. One of those words that just sounds funny, like it should be meaningful.

I'm not sure if stifado should be:

* A fish soon to be battered and deep-fried into extinction by Red Lobster.

* A medieval torture.

* A service offered by Sicilian hookers.

In any case, it turned out nicely. Once the leftovers in the crock are cool I'll divide it up for freezing.

Sunday Cook said...

OK, finally stopped laughing enough to respond. Hope the stifado was delicious, sounds like a lovely meal.

How are TJ's spinach pies? Since that's something I can make myself, I don't think to buy them prepped. But, making them is such a lot of work unless you do a huge batch all at once. (If you're going to make a mess, should make that mess worthwhile.)

BTW: "Stifado" does sound a lot like "strappado" which *is* a form of torture. Glad your stew didn't qualify as such. :)

Stefan Jones said...

Trader Joe's spinach pies are not bad. They're small, so the filling to wrapping ratio is off, but again, not bad.

The stew turned out OK, but I think I overcooked it. The aroma at 5 hours was utterly stunning; at 7 it was good but not as overwhelmingly rich.

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