Sure, lots of people have a potato soup or potato-leek soup recipe. But, I’d never had baked potato soup until I saw it on the Panera menu last winter. There’s a difference, people. A big difference. When we had a significant number of baking potatoes left over from Christmas’ family dinner, I looked online for a recipe and found several. From a number of them, I created this one. It was ridiculously good and only got better over the next 2 days in the refrigerator. If you’re a fan of twice-baked potatoes, this soup tastes like a liquid version of that! The addition of a little red pepper sauce makes this soup unique and especially wonderful. This recipe makes a large potful. You can halve it if you’re not feeding a crowd or don’t want leftovers.
6 reduced sodium bacon strips, diced
1 large sweet onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 Tbs flour
2 tsp salt
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
6 cups chicken broth (we use Swanson fat free, 33% less sodium)
6-8 large baked potatoes, cubed (leave the skin on half of them, peel the other half)
1 cup sour cream
1 cup low fat milk (1% or 2% – not skim)
1 tsp hot pepper sauce (Crystal Louisiana hot sauce is ideal. Tabasco is too hot)
Shredded sharp cheddar cheese
In a large saucepan (6 quarts or larger), cook the bacon until crisp. Drain and set aside. Remove all but 2 Tbs of the drippings from the pot. Saute the onions and garlic on medium high heat until tender. Stir in the flour, alt, basil & pepper. Mix well. Gradually add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil for 2 minutes, then add the potatoes, cream, and hot pepper sauce. Heat through, but do not boil. Crumble the bacon and stir it in. Serve topped with shredded cheddar and fresh minced parsley (optional).
Your Daily Bread
Proverbs 16:20 Whoever gives heed to instruction prospers,
and blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD.
21 The wise in heart are called discerning,
and gracious words promote instruction.
22 Prudence is a fountain of life to the prudent,
but folly brings punishment to fools.
23 The hearts of the wise make their mouths prudent,
and their lips promote instruction.
24 Gracious words are a honeycomb,
sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.