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Bacon and Potato Soup

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Despite the simple name this is a gourmet soup that is really easy to make. I would describe it as a hip friendly soup haha. I have been on a health kick lately and have managed to lose 10 pounds in the last 8 weeks whilst still eating all the yummy recipes you see here on my site, including this bacon and potato soup. I am a firm believer that a diet does NOT have to be torture rather just a good dose of balance and common sense. Anyway back to today’s soup. Every time I make this soup there is never a drop left. My husband and kids absolutely love it. Actually the last time I had a dinner party two people asked me for the recipe. If I could emphasize one thing it would be to drain your bacon properly. We really want to be using the least amount of fat as possible and draining and drying your bacon thoroughly ensures this. Serve this soup with a nice crusty fresh bread and your tummy will thank you.

Ingredients

  • 6 thick slices bacon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 4 cups low fat, low sodium chicken broth
  • 4 cups cubed potatoes
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Description

  1. Cook bacon until crisp in 3-quart saucepan, remove and drain well on paper towels. Discard bacon grease and wipe pan thoroughly with paper towel.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare vegetables. Add olive oil to saucepan and add onion, carrot, and celery as they are cut up. Saute until onion is soft but not brown, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Stir in chicken broth, potatoes, and pepper; bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender, about 10-15 minutes.
  4. Stir in cheese, heating just until melted–do not boil. Chop bacon and add to soup. Adjust seasoning to taste by adding salt, if desired. Serve at once.

Baked Potato with Mushrooms and Cheese

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I don’t know about you but watching cheese as it melts makes me hungry. Anyone who can resist a cheese and potato combination must dislike food or something. But for the life of me, why would you? There’s nothing to disapprove about this recipe. This dish is basically hyped up mashed potatoes with just a bit more cheese added to it (abundantly so). It would be the perfect complement to steak or fried chicken dinners. Yum!

It’s healthier too because you left the skins on the potatoes not just for presentation. Now some people may not want to eat the skins and that’s perfectly fine. They’re missing out though because I’ve learned that potato skins contain more nutrients than the flesh itself. It really is more nutritious to eat the skin. Anyway it’s perfectly clean. Just make sure to wash them thoroughly before you start baking at all.

If you’re the world’s biggest fan of mashed potatoes like I am, then this recipe will knock your socks off. It’s flavorful and the mushrooms give it a new texture. Plus, the cheese is just heaven. The kids will love this recipe as much as you do. I can tell you that!

Ingredients

  • 6 small russet potatoes (about 7 ounces each), scrubbed
  • 5 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 12 ounces mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • 2 large green onions, chopped
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, room temperature (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 1/4 cups coarsely grated white cheddar cheese

Description

  1. Start by baking the potatoes. Set the oven to preheat at 375°F. Using a fork, pierce each potato several times and place them directly on the rack. Bake for at least an hour. When done, they should break open easily just don’t destroy the skins on them.
  2. While potatoes are baking, melt a tablespoon of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the mushrooms for about 7 minutes or until golden brown. Stir frequently. Then add the green onions, cook until wilted and set aside.
  3. Take the potatoes out from the oven using your mitts and cut them in half, lengthwise. Slowly scoop out all of the cooked flesh, place it on a bowl and leave the skins intact. Add sour cream, cream cheese and 4 tablespoons of butter (not melted) to the bowl and mash all ingredients together. Mix well after.
  4. Then take the mushroom and green onion and add them to the mashed potatoes. Add half a cup of cheddar cheese and mix well. Season to taste using salt and pepper.
  5. Meanwhile, preheat oven again to 375°F. Then take a spoon and mound in the mashed potato mixture gently into the skins. Sprinkle each with about a tablespoon of cheese. Place each potato half on a baking sheet. You can make this ahead of time and refrigerate just before baking.
  6. Bake the potato halves until all the cheese melts through. That takes about 25-35 minutes depending on how long the potatoes have been refrigerated. Serve hot.

 

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