Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Potato Cheese Soup

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Cook till tender:
5 cups chicken broth
1 3/4 cup chopped celery
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
6-8 cups potatoes, diced small
1 tsp salt
dash pepper
2 grated carrots

Once veggies are tender, remove from heat.  Melt 3/4 cup butter and add 3/4 cup flour to make a roux.  Stir butter and flour into vegetable mixture.  Add 2 cup half & half and an 8 oz jar  Cheez Whiz.  Stir well over low heat.

This recipe is a favorite at my house.  One of the few cons of summer around here is that it is not "cheese soup" weather.  Even the picky 4-year old will eat this one without too much coaxing and cajoling.

I always like to start by chopping up all my veggies.  I just use my chopper for everything and pulverize everything until it could not be identified in a line-up with a scrutinizing 4 year old at the window eager to pick out vegetable perpetrators.
  The potatoes I dice up fairly small but not so small that several good minutes of simmering will make them disappear.  One friend I passed this recipe on to said she liked her potatoes in big chunks.  It is, after all, called Potato Cheese Soup.  So dice them to your own personal preference.  One trick I like to use with potatoes on days when I am trying to be on the ball is to go ahead and peel them and dice them up at a time of day when I have a spare minute, put them in a large container, then cover them with cold water (or any temperature water will work here).  This keeps them from browning and turning nasty looking and then they are all ready to go when you're ready to start cooking several hours later (very handy on church days with that nasty 1-4 pm schedule).
Add your veggies to a large stockpot, and dump in your chicken broth.  I am not one to waste a lot of time at measuring anything.  I never measure my veggies when I chop.  I just chop till I'm tired and it looks like enough.  This goes for the broth too.  I've always assumed that 1- 14 oz can of broth is close to 2 cups.  Therefore, 3 cans should be... about right, that's what.  I suppose if you were feeling skimpy, you could add 2 cans of broth and a half can of water.  This soup is very forgiving.
Don't forget your salt and pepper.  This does make a bit of difference.  Luckily, you can make up for it later if you forget but best to add in here at this step.  When I originally got this recipe, it suggested that the "cook till tender" part would take about 10 minutes.  Notice that I omitted that because this never takes just 10 minutes.  Maybe my stove is slow or something or I'm chopping the potatoes bigger than the recipe writer but I like to cook them until those potatoes are fork tender and that always takes a whole lot longer than 10 minutes.  I'm not going to name a time.  Just stir occasionally and poke with a fork every so often.
When you're convinced those veggies are where you like them, turn off the heat.  While this delicious mixture is simmering away, go ahead and whip up your roux.  I always just melt my cube and a half of butter in the microwave (or on the counter if your demanding sister is making you cook up soup in the middle of summer for a blog post), then add my flour and mix the two with a fork or a spoon or the nearest utensil handy and set aside.  I was going to take a picture of the final product here but the phone rang and I got distracted and didn't think about it again until I had already added it to the pot.  Nevertheless, your roux should look smooth and velvety.
When your veggies are tender, remove the pot briefly from the heat, add the roux, and stir it in.  This will make things very thick.  Go ahead and add your half and half (surprise, must of left that off the grocery list, oh well, milk can be substituted here with no issues at all), then put back on a lower heat and add your cheez whiz.
The recipe calls for an 8 oz bottle.  Do they make such things?  I've never seen one.  So the first time I made this I only had a 15 oz bottle of cheez whiz and I was just going to add half of it when I thought to myself, I will stick this half used jar in my fridge, it will end up in the back somewhere hidden from view until I discover it 6 months later growing something greenish blue across the top of it.  After throwing up in my mouth, I will throw the bottle away and think, dang it, why don't they make an 8 oz bottle of that stuff so people don't have to waste it.  After this line of thinking, I decided that I would just add the whole 15 ounces, after all if some cheese is good, then twice as much cheese must be better, right.  I was not disappointed and I've done it that way ever since.  I have never had anyone say, man that was good but it was about twice as cheesy as I would have liked.  Long story short, here's another place in the recipe where you can use your own great judgment.  Stir it all in till it's heated through and serve.

This is delicious with some homemade rolls...recipe to come later...
or straight from the spoon.  Enjoy!

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shopannies said...

this is so yummy and filling for fall weather thanks for sharing come see what I shared at

Anonymous said...

Mmmm that looks good!!

Ashley said...

yummmm! thanks for sharing :)

Jill said...

Perfect for with those rolls! I take it cheese whizz is kind of a cheese spread!(we don't have that here in Oz)

Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
Hope you have a great week!
Jill @ Creating my way to Success

Marie said...



Dalton said...

Was going to use your recipe, but as I was making my shopping list, I realized that you have not listed the amounts of all the ingredients!

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