Monday, January 16, 2012

Bake Potato Soup

I live in Utah at about 6,500 elevation. It is January. There is NO snow. It is starting to piss me off. Typically, at this time of the year I would be inviting all my friends and family over for a fabulous sledding party.  I would be stoking up the fire, cranking up the hot chocolate machine, and whipping up some warm and hearty soup for everyone to enjoy as they stare out the window, watching the big flakes pile up.  We would hear the children squealing in delight as the zoom down the hill just of the deck of our house.  Alas, there is no snow, the mountains had more snow that this on the 4th of July!  Although I can not control mother nature, I can still make some fantastic soup, and hold out hope for a huge storm.

This soup, of my own invention, truly tastes like a loaded baked potato.  Don't throw away those potato skins, because they will make perfect potato skins to accompany the soup.

Baked Potato Soup

4 large already baked, and cooled Russet Potatoes
1 small onion, fine diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 T butter
1/4 c flour
2 cups Chicken Stock (you only use homemade right?)
1 c sour cream
2 c shredded medium cheddar cheese
3 c milk
1 T fresh chives, diced
salt and pepper to taste

bacon, fried onions, and sour cream for garnish

After you have added and cooked the butter and flour.
Step 1:
Saute the onions in a little olive oil, add garlic.  Sauté till fragrant.

Step 2:
Add butter and flour and saute for a few minutes.  Season lightly with salt and fresh pepper.
After the chicken stock has thickened

Step 3:

Add the chicken stock.  Scoop the inside of one of the potatoes and mix well into the stock mix. Let this simmer and allow to thicken.

After the cheese and sour cream are added

Step 4:

Add the sour cream and the cheese.

Step 5:

Add the milk.  Whisk well, and allow thickened. Scoop the remaining potato guts into the mix and stir well with a wire whisk.  Continue to simmer till thickened.  Give it a taste to see if it needs more salt and pepper. It most likely will.  Lastly, add the fresh chives. Let your guest garnish their own soup with bacon, more sour cream, fried onions, chives, and anything else you think would be fabulous!

That is not all!  Quickly turn the skins into some great appetizers to go with the soup. Cut the skins into quarters.  Season them with salt and fresh pepper.  Top them with cheese and pop them in the oven for about 5 minutes to melt the cheese.

Instead of sour cream, top them with ranch dip.  Next add plenty of bacon and some chives.  They will be a huge hit.

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