This guest post by Southern Belle and entry in our non-fiction writing contest.
This contest will end on February 16 2013 – prizes include:
- First Place winner will receive Two cases of MRE’s courtesy of Camping Survival, A Wonder Junior Deluxe hand-mill courtesy of Kitchen Kneads, $150 gift certificate for Fiocchi Ammo courtesy of LuckyGunner Ammo, ABig Berkey Water Filter System courtesy of TruPrep Emergency Preparedness and a one year subscription to Personal VPN servicecourtesy of unspyable.
- Second Place: A $200 gift certificate for any order from their store courtesy of Shepherd Survival and A Doom and Bloom Mini Trauma Bagcourtesy of LPC Survival.
- Third Place: A Bar-ricade door bar courtesy of My Locksmith, Inc.
So here in Tennessee, it has turned a bit cold and wet outside. For my family, nothing warms us up better than my “Fat Girl” potato soup. Be warned: there is real butter and milk in this delicious soup. It will never be considered diet friendly but, it is comfort food at its finest. In addition, it is extremely affordable and can feed a whole house with leftovers to spare. This is a soup that I make when I need to use up leftovers and bits from the fridge during the winter. Best of all, these ingredients are probably in your fridge or pantry right now and most are shelf stable.
-4 slices of bacon- diced
-1 cup diced celery
-1 cup diced carrots
-1 cup diced sweet onion
-2 cloves of minced garlic
-2 boxes of scalloped potatoes (just the potatoes not the seasoning packet)
-1/2 stick of butter
-1 cup diced ham (I am using leftover ham from Christmas.)
-1 cup milk
-1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
-2 cans cream of mushroom
-2 cans cream of potato
-1 can cheddar cheese soup
-2 cans chicken broth
-salt and pepper to taste
- Brown the bacon in a large pot then ladle out onto paper towel. I use a Dutch oven on medium heat. Don’t burn the bacon. That seriously is considered a crime down here in the south. We love our pork.
- Add the diced ham and heat through. I told you we love our pork!
- In with the yummy bacon grease and ham, add the celery, carrots, onion, and garlic until they begin to soften (about 5 minutes) then add the butter and salt and pepper to taste. Oh yes, it smells amazing. Do not be surprised if family members begin asking what smells so delicious. I tell mine to stay out of the kitchen for their own safety.
- After the butter has melted, deglaze your pot with one can of chicken broth. Turn your heat down to low and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Now add the soups and milk. Stir well. Let simmer for 5 more minutes. The smell is killing ya I know but it will be worth it. I promise.
- Add potatoes. Save the seasoning packet for another time. This is a great starter for broccoli cheddar soup. Another recipe for another day. :o)
- Let the potatoes soak in all the goodness for at least 30 minutes on low. If you like your soup thinner, add the other can of chicken broth now. My family likes it a bit thinner so I add ½ can for the taste. Adding this also helps the soup stretch a bit further.
- Stir in half of the bacon and half of the cheese. Let simmer for 10 more minutes. Don’t fret. You have almost made it to amazing goodness in a bowl. You can do this.
- Serve with leftover cheese and bacon. I even add some diced green onions if I have some in the fridge. Enjoy the yumminess! Go ahead and get seconds. You are going to want some.
Feel free to modify any of the ingredients to your family’s taste. Sometimes, I substitute the dried potatoes for 5 fresh potatoes by dicing and parboiling them before I add them to the pot. You could also use shelf stable milk, garlic powder, and freeze-dried veggies as well. Just use a bit more chicken broth. I keep these dry ingredients on hand and in our emergency meal kit. This entire recipe costs me about $7.50 and easily feeds 8 people with leftovers. That is less than $1 per person. Hope ya’ll enjoy it!
Cooking and prepping for the ones I love.