Friday, November 20, 2009

Garlic Potato Soup

For the last five years, Jennifer has held an open studio sale so that she and I and other artists have an outlet for our need to create. This year, we also fed our need for community with a pot luck supper so we could spend more time with friends who live too far away and who we don't see often enough.

Feeding the community and ...

...the imagination and more...
To go with the main dishes of turkey and veggie chilis, I made Twice Baked Potatoes with Broccoli and Cheddar Cheese from my new favorite food site, culinate. I used homegrown yukon gold for this do-ahead kind of mashed potatoes and followed the recipe exactly, not easy for me since I always tweak everything. I assembled the dish the night before and carried it south in a cooler. When it was time to eat, 20 minutes in a 350 degree oven was all that was needed. It was convenient, portable and oh so very good topped with turkey chili and a small dollop of sour cream.

What I really want to share with you, however, is the soup I made with the extra baked potatoes that didn't make it to the pot luck. I rough chopped a half dozen or so of the medium size ones and added them to my Fresh Garlic Soup, making it thicker and heartier. Topped with a scattering of sauteed wild mushrooms, this soup feeds your body and your soul.

Garlic Potato Soup with mushrooms

Homegrown goodness

The recipe:
4 cups potatoes, cooked and roughly chopped
2 heads of garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
1 large leek, or 1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
6 sage leaves
4 cups chicken stock
2+ cups of water
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Sauteed mushrooms (optional)
salt and pepper

In a soup pot, bring 4 cups of chicken stock to a boil, add all ingredients, simmer gently uncovered, until garlic and potatoes are very soft, about 20 minutes. Remove sage leaves and puree soup in a blender or food processor. Return to pot, stir in Parmesan cheese. For thinner soup add water as needed and adjust seasoning accordingly. My husband likes crunchy croutons with his soups, but I think this soup needs nothing more than an arugula salad, fresh picked from the garden, with thin slices of apples, a sprinkling of toasted nuts and your favorite dressing. Mine is creamy blue cheese.

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