A couple weeks ago we had a taste of spring, and it was wonderful. However, it was only Mother Nature teasing us because although the calendar says it’s spring, the weather has been anything but spring-like. With temperatures topping out in the high 30s and fairly windy days making the temperature feel cooler, we’ve been bundling up in coats, sweaters, and gloves again. That certainly isn’t what I imagine when I think of spring.
This weather doesn’t encourage me to make big salads for dinner, even though I now have an almost endless supply of greens, courtesy of my husband’s indoor gardening. What I crave is something that will me inside and out, such as a pot of soup. With a vegetarian daughter in the house, it adds a challenge to my soup-making skills. I don’t mind vegetarian soups, but it seems that so many recipes start with a chicken stock base. While I could replace it with vegetable stock, it doesn’t always seem like the correct substitution. The other challenge is to find a vegetarian soup that will be hearty enough to be the main dish.
This Cheddar Potato Soup was an excellent choice. The addition of freshly grated nutmeg and a generous portion of sharp cheddar cheese gave this soup all of the flavor it needed. Although many potato soups are made with chicken broth or have bacon added for flavor, a little seasoning and a little extra cheese seemed to make it work. Even our son who is quite carniverous didn’t mind having a vegetarian soup, as it was so hearty and flavorful.
A warm and rich (but lowfat) soup did make us feel much warmer that night. However, we’d gladly take some spring weather to warm us instead.
- 1 pound potatoes, peeled & diced
- 3 Tb. butter
- 1/2 large onion, diced
- 3 Tb. flour
- 4 cups skim milk
- 1-1/2 cups sharp cheddar, shredded
- salt & pepper
- Fill a medium saucepot with water and bring to a boil. Add potatoes, and boil for about 5 minutes, or until the potatoes are barely fork tender.
- Remove potatoes to a small bowl to cool, discard water, and return pot to burner on medium heat. Melt butter in pot and add onions.
- Cook for 3-5 minutes, or until translucent. Add flour and cook, stirring frequently, for another 3 minutes.
- Slowly add milk, stirring constantly to combine.
- When it nears boiling, reduce to a simmer, and add cheddar and potatoes.
- Add nutmeg, salt, and pepper to taste.
- Allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.