by LYDIA BOLEN
“My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish His work.” – John 4:34
Happy New Year! Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet? Whether you are on a diet, or resolving to eat healthier, a one-pot meal of soup with variety is a good start.
I love to make soup when it is cold outside. Soup makes a substantial, well-balanced meal. A bonus is that a pot of soup can feed the entire family—twice over. If you are one of those who prefer not to eat the same thing two days in a row, then freeze the remaining soup for a later date.
Get outside and enjoy this brisk cooler weather. When family members come in from the day, then “soup’s on”!
BAKED POTATO SOUP
- 4 large baking potatoes
- 2/3 cup butter
- 2/3 cup flour
- 6 cups milk
- Salt (to taste)
- freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
- 4 green onions, chopped
- 12 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
- 1 1/4 cups Cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 cup sour cream (may use light)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Wash the potatoes and pierce several times with a fork. Bake for 1 hour, or until soft. Cool. Cut the potatoes into halves and scoop the pulp into a bowl; discard the skins.
Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Stir in the flour. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the milk gradually, stirring well after each addition. Cook over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Continue stirring. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the potato pulp, 2 tablespoons of the green onions, 1/2 cup of the bacon and 1 cup of the cheese. Cook until heated well. Stir in sour cream. Add additional milk if needed for the desired consistency.
Sprinkle each serving with the remaining green onions, bacon and cheese, as desired.
Serves 6 to 8. Can be doubled and freezes well.
HAM AND LENTIL SOUP
- 1 ham bone (if you don’t have one, they can be purchased at Logan’s Farm or Honey-Baked Ham stores, and are very inexpensive)
- 6 cups water
- 1 1/4 cups dried lentils, rinsed
- 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 3 carrots, sliced
- 2 to 3 celery ribs, sliced
- 1/4 cup green onions, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 12 ounces pork sausage, cooked and drained
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
In a Dutch oven, bring ham bone and water to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for one and one-half hours.
Remove ham bone. To broth, add the lentils, tomatoes, carrots, celery, onions, and seasonings; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes or until lentils and vegetables are tender.
Remove ham from bone; coarsely chop. Add the ham, sausage, and parsley to soup. Heat and eat.
Makes 10 to 12 servings.
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 6 green onions, finely chopped
- 1 rib celery, finely chopped
- 2 cans chicken broth
- 1 can cream of chicken soup
- 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (or to taste)
- 1 pound Velveeta cheese
- 3 cups sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
- 2 cups half-and-half cream
- (can use fat-free)
Sauté onions and celery in butter until soft. Add chicken broth and soup; stir until smooth. Add seasonings and simmer on low for 20 minutes, covered. Add cheeses, then cream. Cook all on LOW heat for 20 minutes. Do NOT boil! Serve with crackers
Remember to make memories through the kitchen— “the heartbeat of the home.” E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions.