It is the season for soup! We've had some cold and snow in the last few days, so I pulled out some soup recipes. One of my favorites is not the most healthy soup ever, but it is fantastic. If you don't like spicy, leave the peppers out. I always take a recipe and substitute for my own taste, but I'll give it to you as I got it:
1-1/2 cups water
2 cups cubed peeled potatoes (I actually like it better with the peel left on)
2 small carrots, grated
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup chopped green pepper (I like a little more than it calls for)
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped (Use plastic gloves! Also, I like it spicy, so I let some of the seeds make it in)
1 garlic clove, minced (Or two. Or three. Just saying.)
1 tablespoon beef bouillon granules
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 lb ground beef, cooked and drained
2-1/2 cups milk, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
8 ounces process American cheese, cubed (I always use cheddar, because pasteurized processed cheese product? Gross!)
1/4 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
1/2 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
In a large saucepan, combine the first nine ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Stir in beef and two cups of milk; heat through. Combine the flour and remaining milk until smooth; gradually stir into soup. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for two minutes until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; stir in cheese until melted. Add cayenne if desired. Top with bacon just before serving.
A few little notes on my own modifications. Last time I made it, I was careful to follow the above proportions, but I didn't like it quite as well. I usually have about 3 cups of potatoes or a little more (about 2 medium potatoes), about 4 carrots (but I don't really know for sure because I buy the carrots that are already grated; I don't have a food processor and I hate grating carrots), and at least 1/2 cup chopped green pepper. The rest of the ingredients stay the same; I just add enough water to cover the vegetables. I take that back, I also cut back the amount of bacon a little bit. I love bacon, but it seems to get a pretty good bacon flavor from 3-4 strips of bacon. If you like really meaty soup, keep the proportions as the recipe calls for. I like meat, but the way the recipe makes it is about half meat, and I don't like quite that much meat in soup. I never worry about having a big batch, because it freezes well.
Anyone else have any favorite winter soup recipes?