I’m hosting my book club this week and have been utterly uninspired when thinking about what to feed them. I simply am not up for making a trip to Trader Joe’s or Kroger or Party Source for cheese, crackers, crudite and some sort of ranch dressing-flavored dip. I know I could turn to Pinterest for more creative finger food ideas, but the idea of rolling string cheese in wonton wrappers for homemade mozerella sticks just isn’t doing it for me, either.
So, I’m doing my cold-weather standby: I’m going to make a big pot of potato soup. I’ll offer a bunch of different garnishes, some fruit on the side and something sweet to finish it off. I figure everybody could use a nice hot cup of soup on a chilly night, right?
If you want to make potato soup along with me, here’s my recipe. Like everything I do, it’s light on exact measurements and heavy on dumping stuff until you like the taste. And also, per my usual, it makes great leftovers. So if you make enough, you’ll have quick meals for your family later on, too!
Sara’s Potato Soup
4-5 regular baking potatoes (this doesn’t work very well with new potatoes, or ones with smoother, silkier meat) – Use more potatoes if you’re feeding a bigger crowd
1 small yellow onion
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 can chicken broth
Cream – Heavy or half and half
Salt and Pepper to taste
1. Boil the potatoes until tender – it’s up to you whether you leave the skin on. For soup, I prefer to peel my potatoes, but my husband loves the skins. Whatever floats your boat is fine.
2. In a skillet, sautee the onions and celery together in a bit of olive oil until they’re transparent.
3. Drain potatoes and return to the pot. Mash them until they’ve completely broken down.
4. Add onions and celery
5. Return the pot to the stove, low heat, and add chicken broth – Remember you’re going to add cream and milk, too, so don’t let it get to soupy at this stage. Eyeball it until you like the consistency.
6. Add milk and cream in whatever proportion fits your taste, until the potato mixture takes on a soup consistency to your liking.
7. Salt and pepper to taste
8. Simmer as long as you need to, until you’re ready to serve
9. Serve with garnishes, which could include crumbled bacon, cheddar cheese, green onions, oyster crackers and even sour cream.