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Potato and Cheddar Soup



Category

Soups and Salads

Source

Recipe from Susan Nye's Around the Table

Link

http://www.susannye.wordpress.com

Description

The potato famine brought many Irish to America. Perhaps, your great-grandparents were among them. Share the story with your kids.

Number of Servings

Serves 8

Ingredients

3-4 slices thick cut bacon, diced
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
2-3 stalks celery, finely chopped
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 c. dry white wine
2 lbs. red skinned potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 1/2-2 qt. chicken stock
3-4 sprigs thyme
1 bay leaf
1 c. sour cream (optional)
4 oz. (plus more for garnish) sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
Chopped chives and/or fresh parsley for garnish

Preparation - Directions

Put bacon in large stockpot and cook over medium heat until crispy. Remove bacon from the pan and reserve. Drain most of the fat, leaving enough to lightly coat the pan.

Add onion, carrots and celery, season with the red pepper flakes, salt and pepper and sauté over medium heat for 10-15 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add garlic and continue cooking for 2-3 minutes. Add wine and simmer until reduced by half.

Add potatoes and 1 1/2 quarts chicken stock to the pot. Tie the thyme and bay leaf with butcher’s string and add the bundle to the pot. Bring soup to a boil; reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Let the soup cool for about 30 minutes. Remove the herb bundle.

Use a potato masher to break up the potatoes and thicken the soup. You don’t want mashed potatoes; you want rough, bite-sized pieces. If the soup gets too thick, add a little more stock.

Put sour cream in a small bowl and, a little at a time, whisk in 2 cups of soup. Stir sour cream mixture into the soup pot. Stir cheddar cheese into the soup. Stirring frequently, reheat soup to steaming.

Meanwhile, put the bacon pieces on a sheet pan and warm in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes.

Ladle soup into bowls, garnish with a little more cheddar cheese, bacon and chives. Serve immediately.

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