Monday, October 4, 2010

REAL Cheesy Bacon Potato Soup

A few weeks back as I prepared to make some of the same boring soup that we eat all the time, I saw that I had a pound of bacon on hand and a spare block of cheddar. I knew that I needed to make a cheesy, bacon potato soup. But after much searching on the web, I was disappointed with the quality of recipes that I was finding. Most of the recipes called for processed cheese. If it called for real cheese, then it called for some type of canned soup. If it wasn't canned soup, then it included bouillon cubes or granules. Ugh!

I am not trying to cast judgment on those who utilize processed foods. I don't eat real, whole foods all the time. Last Tuesday night I was scarfing down a burrito from Taco Bell at midnight, courtesy of my loving husband, at my request. But when I go through the labor of love of cooking for my family, I want it to be real food. That way I don't have to stress about other occasions where processed foods will come into the picture.

So, with the limited recipe options, I went ahead and created my own. It turned out pretty good. This soup seems to get better after it sits in the fridge and is reheated. It makes a nice, cozy fall soup. Enjoy!

REAL Cheesy, Bacon Potato Soup

1 pound bacon
1/2 stick of butter
2 medium onions, chopped
2 large celery stalks, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
8 potatoes, cubed (peel if you prefer, I left the skins on)
6 -7 cups of chicken stock or broth(homemade is best)
1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp pepper
1 1/2 cups of shredded sharp cheddar
2 1/3 cups milk
1/3 cup flour
2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped or 2 tsp. dried parsley

Cook bacon in large soup pot. Remove bacon and leave grease. Add 1/2 stick butter, onions, celery and carrots. Cook over medium-high heat until vegetables are soft and onions are getting transparent. Add potatoes and broth. Add salt and pepper. If using dried parsley, add now. Bring to a boil and simmer until potatoes are tender. Add cheese and stir until melted. In a separate bowl stir flour into milk until mostly dissolved. Pour this into soup. Once bacon is cooled, chop and add it to soup. Stir continually for about 5 minutes or until soup has thickened. If using fresh parsley, add at the end. Check soup to see if additional salt and pepper are needed.

Everyone enjoyed this the first night and the next two days as we finished the leftovers at lunch. Enjoy!

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