Sunday, January 10, 2016

Potato Soup...or Chowder...

It is a frigidly cold day here in the south.  Temps dropped to 15 degrees last night and our high today reached a whopping 29 degrees.  The sky is overcast, the wind is blowing and we have a light dusting of snow.  While I know this is nothing compared to what my northern friends experience during the winter months, for us, it's pretty darn cold.

One thing I love about winter is being able to cook all of the wonderful soup and stew recipes I've collected over the years.  I wish that you could be sitting with me in our home right now...homemade potato chowder on the stove, Grandmother Ruby's country cornbread baking in the oven, and a batch of freshly baked semi-homemade blueberry muffins cooling on the counter.


The aroma of warm comfort foods on a dreary winter's day is heavenly.  Add to that a warm fire burning in the fireplace and a cup of hot chocolate.  It truly doesn't get any better than this.  For me, the only thing missing is 2 feet of snow on the ground and a sweeping view of the Smoky Mountains.  I'm still trying to figure out how I ended up in the South when I have such a love affair with snow.  The hubster says the love affair would be over after my first shoveling of the driveway!  He lived in New Jersey for a short while and said that was enough snow to last a lifetime.  But I digress....

What I want to share with you is this wonderful recipe I have for homemade Potato Chowder.


For the longest, I have called this recipe Potato Soup.  But the hubster and I had a brief conversation about the differences between soups and chowders, which prompted us to consult Mr. Google to find out the difference.  After a brief bit of research, we determined this recipe definitely fell into the chowder category.   It is thick, chunky and has a creamy/cheese base.


My dear friend Cindy gave this recipe to me many years ago.  I make it regularly during the winter and occasionally during the spring, but after that, it is just too blamed hot.  I am going to give you the original recipe and then give you the changes I've made over the years.

CINDY'S POTATO SOUP/CHOWDER
3 cups uncooked potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 pound Velveeta cheese
1 chicken bouillon cube
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon parsley flakes
1/2 cup chopped celery (optional)

Mix potatoes, bouillon cube, onion, garlic, parsley and salt in water and boil until potatoes are soft.  Drain most of the water, but not all.  Mash potatoes to desired consistency (chunky or smooth).  Add milk and Velveeta cheese.  Stir well and cook on low until well blended and warmed through.  Serves 8.


Now, for the changes I make.  I like to use two types of potatoes....Russet and Yukon Gold.   The Yukon Gold potatoes add a little sweetness to the recipe.  I leave most of the skins on our potatoes.  I also add some Oregano and black pepper.  Instead of using Velveeta cheese, I use a can of Campbell's Cream of Cheese soup.  I do not mash our potatoes as the hubster likes the chowder pretty chunky and I do not add celery.   If you have fresh parsley, great.  If not, use the flakes.  Garnish with some grated cheese, parsley flakes, cornbread crumbles and chopped onion.


This chowder is delicious and I serve it with homemade cornbread.  YUM!  We finished up this meal with some blueberry muffins.


What a perfect way to spend a wintry day!


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40 comments

  1. YUM! that sounds wonderful!
    i had potato soup for dinner myself this evening. it's bitterly cold and windy here too.
    but... alas... no cheese in mine. the old cholesterol bugaboo... and I LOVE CHEESE. but doc's orders to leave cheese alone. sad in the extreme.
    but even so... it remains one of my favorite soups!
    mine was creamy and oniony... though minus the homemade cornbread tonight...
    it still always warms all your insides up real good! LOL. XO♥

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    1. Thank you so much! It is a great recipe and we really enjoy it when it is cold. It does warm the insides very well!! I don't know if I could go without cheese. I don't eat as much as the hubster, but it is a pretty big deal...I love Seriously Sharp White Cheddar. Sorry.... ;-) Love and hugs!!

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  2. I can almost smell the heavenly aromas coming from your kitchen, Benita. Wow.
    Amalia
    xo

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    1. Thank you! It was a great day in the food department! :-) Hugs!

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  3. Chowdah or soup...it sure looks good! I make a baked potato soup that is similar. Asiago is another good cheese for potato soup. It is in the single digits here so it is definitely soup weather!

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    1. Thank you so much! I’ve often wondered why “chowdah” was so much more popular in the northern states than down here in the South. Maybe I’ve been living under a rock and it’s always been popular down here…LOL. YUM…you should email me the recipe! I love new recipes! Hugs!!

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  4. Yummy-I love making soups and chowders too!

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    1. It's the perfect time of year for them...I can't make them when the weather heats up...it's just too miserable!

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  5. I spent my day like that yesterday, also! It was unseasonably warm here in the Northeast, and raining - today is cold with snow squalls. What a difference a day makes!! Looks so yummy, Benita!

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    1. We have had bizarre weather…freezing cold….too warm…freezing cold…a little warm….stupid weather...LOL. I love baking and cooking when it is really cold outside…just makes the house all nice and cozy! Thanks so much! Hugs!!

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  6. MMM, Yum!! This soup looks amazing! Love soup, and/or chowder!! Will have to give this one a try the weekend! It's so cold here too...but much colder than where you are...right now it is 14 here and tonight will be a low of 9...9!!! Brrrrr...and Grrrrr! ;) Hate the cold!! Not warming up here until Thursday! May have to make your soup before the weekend!
    Those blueberry muffins look good too!
    Hope your week is off to a good start!!
    Bigs Hugs, Kimberley

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    1. Thank you ma'am! I think you will like it. The hubster is up in your neck of the words...I wasn't able to make the trip. He's freezing and can't seem to find a comfortable temperature. I should have sent potato chowder with him...LOL The muffins were a mix with a bit of doctoring for a homemade touch...easy peasy! Love and Hugs to you sweet friend...so sorry I wasn't able to visit this time!

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  7. Welcome to winter, Friend! This chowder/soup looks almost identical to one that my hubby makes. It was a recipe that his mother used to make, and it is so tasty! Those muffins look like the perfect add-on. Stay warm!

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    1. I love the cold weather and love cooking/baking when it's cold. Just cozies up the house! We have been up and down this week...I'm ready to break out that snow you sent me! :-) Thank you so much! Hugs to you!!

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  8. Yummy.....I am adding this to my winter foods list to make. It looks delicious. We got snow on Sunday and it was beautiful. Thanks for the recipe. Sharing and pinning. Hugs!!!

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    1. Thank you so much! I hope you enjoy it! No snow here but plenty of cold. I want it cold AND snowy! :-) Hugs!!

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  9. Yum, Benita I'm a lover of soups and chowders amd my winter consists of a different soup each week. Will try yours for sure. BTW you are not missing out on any snow in the North East. In Philly it's cold and we've had rain but not a flake of snow so far.
    xoxo,
    Vera

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    1. I love them also….during the winter they are just the best to keep you all toasty and warm on the inside! I saw that a storm is headed that way…bringing sleet and snow! Hope you stay safe and warm! Hugs to you sweet friend!!

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  10. This sounds so delicious! I love soup when it's cold outside. And listen. If you had to turn on the oven for the muffins they're homemade. LOL

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    1. Thank you so much! And Lisa, I love the way you think!! You are so right...LOL Hugs!

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  11. Our temperatures are in the 20's tonight, but no snow yet. My goodness, your dinner sure does look fabulous. I love soup so much that I can actually eat it year round. I've never made homemade potato chowder before though, so this recipe is definitely one I'm trying out. Stay warm... :)

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    1. We've dipped way down in the teens, but I really, really want some snow. The hubster is in Chicago freezing...so I cannot even mention the "S" word around him right now...LOL. Give it a try, I think you will like it! Stay warm also and Hugs!!

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  12. Yummy!! My husband makes a great potato soup. You are right, it is perfect for a cold night.
    Carla

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    1. Thank you so much! Send me the recipe please…I love seeing varieties of recipes for soups and chowders…they all have a different taste and a few different ingredients! :-) Hugs!

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  13. Sounds delicious! I just made potato soup last week and cooked up a pound of bacon to sprinkle on the top. I may have to call mine chowder too because I left the potatoes pretty chunky. Or is that just how I felt after eating it?! It is fattening but oh so good!

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    1. Thank you! I should have tried the bacon and am going to have to make some more this weekend just to add bacon...after responding to all of these comments, I'm wanting more of this chowder. It's chowder as long as it has a cream or cheese base...at least that is what Mr. Google said...and the internet is never wrong, right?? LOL And I don't even want to talk about those calories...LOL Hugs!!

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  14. Your potato chowder looks outstanding, Benita, and I Pinned it right away. I recently had a potato soup that was like mashed potatoes. Ugh. Thank you.

    Believe me, 15 degrees is bracing. We were 3 degrees this morning but 15 would be horrid, too. Stay warm

    Jane x

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    1. Thank you so much! It is good and I will be making some more this weekend probably. The hubster is up in Chicago…I had to stay home this trip because of some medical issues with my youngest son AND tax time for the business. He’s up there freezing…I looked at the temps and do not envy you all at all…well, except for the snow…I would love some snow! :-) Hugs sweet friend and you stay warm also…I’m getting hourly reports from the hubster on weather up there…LOL

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  15. Fan-tas-ti-calllllll!!!!!!!

    That meal will keep you warm!

    Up north, we are into real winter. But it's seasonal for us. Not for you. Poor Dears! :-)

    And yes, hubster is right. First big snow storm and you'd have had enough. -giggggles- Or not! You might fool all of us! You might be a Born Snow Bunny. Re-born, that is.

    And bet he lived in NJ, when he was younger and had to shovel. Didn't he hear, now we have snow-blowers, in snow country, now days. -evil giggggles-

    -running, ducking, and hiding-

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    1. LOL....it was definitely a belly warmer and we loved it! Yep, the hubster was younger and there were no snow blowers available...just boy-power...LOL. After they left New Jersey and went back to Dallas his dad said it like this..."I strapped the snow shovel on the roof of the car and drove south. I knew I had driven far enough when someone asked what that was strapped to the roof of my car"...LOL We don't see snow blowers or snow shovels here in the South! Love and hugs to you sweet friend....so glad to see you! :-)

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  16. Benita,
    Love potato soup and just like Jane, I made a potato soup last year and it was like mashed potatoes. A pure embarrassment for me, considering I was born in Idaho and raised on potatoes! Should have known better.
    Sweet Hugs, Sweet Friend!
    xo
    Jemma

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    1. Jemma, we love this recipe. I've made that mistake and it was horrible to look at, but good to eat...LOL. Adding extra milk and leaving those potatoes chunky works every time! LOL....hugs to you sweet friend..I'm playing catch up and will be looking at more photos of that beautiful home!

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  17. You know what would make this chowder even better? BACON! Fry a little and pile everything in with the bacon drippings... just a thought, but I am hungry at the moment and it's early.. so bacon sounds good. I make a clam chowder that we love! And it has bacon :)

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    1. YES...it would (I love syrup...I mean bacon...lol)! Now the hubster is going to make sure I add bacon to this recipe in the future...he thinks everything should be smothered in bacon....LOL. But it would absolutely be delicious with this...okay, will be making another batch and adding bacon...dang it...LOL Hugs!

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  18. I do love soups ... yours looks good.
    Have you tried a celeriac or cauliflower soup? They are tasty too.

    All the best Jan

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    1. Thank you so much Jan! I have tried neither but have heard that cauliflower soup is absolutely wonderful! I will need to find a recipe and give it a try! Hugs to you!

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  19. OH MY GAWWWW THis looks so tasty! I can't wait to make this. Wonderful photos my friend. :) Pinning for a definite cold winter night.....and summer too.

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    1. Thank you so much! It is delicious and so easy to make…I like easy!! Hugs!!

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  20. It's finally soup and chowder weather here!! It's alway blueberry muffin weather! ;-)

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    1. One of the things I love most about winter is those hearty, yummy soups...they just don't taste the same during the summer! And ditto...blueberry muffins are great anytime! Hugs!

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