Monday, December 5, 2011

Ham & Potato Soup

This is quite possibly one of my most *famous* dinner items. I use the term famous loosely as not many people outside of my family have tasted it...because we don't share {this} very nicely. It's not because we don't want to entire family loves it. And that might be an under-exaggeration. You see, my family (even though slightly large it consists of mostly young children) can consume an entire STOCKPOT full of this soup in two days. My kids will ask for thirds and fourths...when they ask, "What's for dinner?" and I reply, "Potato Soup" there are usually squeals of delight from my girls and the boys are shouting, "Score!" And my poor husband, who works the evening shift, always lectures us that we need to same him two bowls.
I have only willingly given pots of this soup to a few people. They were recovering from a severe injury or illness and we decided to make dinner for them to help out. I've wanted to make it for the potlucks at church but I don't consider this a side item and doubt that my kids would let anybody else grab a bowl. 

Here is the base recipe that we use. When I make this soup, I adjust it to the taste of my family (No celery, sub celery seed and add shredded cheddar at the end).
·     Ingredients

      3 1/2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
·         1/3 cup diced celery
·         1/3 cup finely chopped onion
·         3/4 cup diced cooked ham
·         3 1/4 cups water
·         2 tablespoons chicken base
·         1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
·         1 teaspoon ground white or black pepper, or to taste
·         5 tablespoons butter
·         5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
·         2 cups milk

1.   Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, ham and water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the chicken base, salt and pepper.
2.   In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk as not to allow lumps to form until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.
3.   Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through. Serve immediately.

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