If there was ever a time for a pot of soup or stew to be set to simmer on the stove, it has been this month. With temperatures below freezing for several days in a row, heat from any source was welcome. It’s time to use that stove or oven or slow cooker for savory dishes and to appreciate the warmth that makes the kitchen toasty and sets the taste buds tingling. Win. Win.
A big Dutch oven of potato soup fits the bill. I made this potato soup for our extended family and not a drop was left. Not being one to let well enough alone, I added a can of corn at the end of the cooking time. Some of the soup is pureed to thicken it, but the balance needs to be right; plenty of potato chunks need to be left.
You know the family’s going to want cornbread to go with this, right?
Perfect Potato Soup
• 6 slices thin bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
• 1 whole medium onion, diced
• 3 whole carrots, scrubbed and diced
• 3 stalks celery, diced
• 6 whole small russet potatoes, peeled and diced
• 8 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
• 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
• 1 cup milk
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 1/2 teaspoon salt, more to taste
• Black pepper to taste
• 1/2 teaspoon Cajun spice mix
• 1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley
• 1 cup grated cheese of your choice
Add bacon pieces to a soup pot over medium heat and cook bacon until crisp and fat is rendered. Remove the bacon from the pot and set it aside. Pour off most of the grease, but do not clean the pot.
Return the hot to medium-high heat and add the onions, carrots and celery. Stir and cook for 2 minutes or so, then add the diced potatoes. Cook for 5 minutes, seasoning with salt, pepper and Cajun spice.
Pour in the broth and bring it to a gentle boil. Cook for 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are starting to get tender. Whisk together the flour and the milk, then pour into the soup and allow the soup to cook for another 5 minutes.
Remove half to 2/3 of the soup and blend in batches in a blender/food processor until completely smooth. Pour it back into the soup pot and stir to combine. Let it heat back up as you taste for seasonings, adding more of what it needs. Stir in cream, then stir in parsley, reserving a little for garnish.
Serve in bowls garnished with parsley, grated cheese and crisp bacon pieces.
Lost a recipe? Have a recipe to share? Reach Betty Slowe at [email protected]
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