Looking around online, I have yet to find a potato soup recipe quite like the one I grew up with. Not having a lot of money, potatoes were a cheap way to feed a large family and boy is it ever filling! Seeing as how I always watched my mom make it and then learned to just make it by guestimating rather than an exact recipe, the following is about as close as I make it, give or take a bit of salt and pepper. Some of the items are optional as I don’t always add them when I make my soup, but they definitely add to the amazing flavor. I’ve had many people tell me they aren’t a fan of potato soup.. until they try mine. Unlike Bisquick or common dumplings, these dumplings are thick and slightly chewy so they won’t get soggy. Thes best part is, you can make it up in large quantity and freeze it in individual bowls for lunch at work or on the go! So, without further hesitation:
YIELD: 10 large bowls
- 1 5 lb bag of potatoes (we prefer red when we have them)
- 2 tsp olive oil (vegetable oil also works)
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cup diced carrots
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 T parsley
- 1 T basil
- 1 T oregano
- salt (to taste)
- pepper (to taste)
- water (just enough to cover potatoes)
- 3-4 cups whole milk (or heavy cream)
- 1 lb bacon (optional)
- 2 cups fully cooked ham, diced (optional)
- 2 cups shredded cheddar or colby-jack cheese (optional)
- Green onions, chopped (optional)
- 5 egg yolks
- 1 whole egg
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp cold water
- 2-3 cups of flour (see directions)
- Add potatoes to a large pot and add enough water just to cover them.
- Cut up bacon into small strips and fry until fully cooked in a large skillet or pan. (I tend to use kitchen scissors and cut across the ends of the strips rather than cooking it in whole strips. I like to use a larger saucepan for cooking as it helps to keep the bacon grease from making a mess.)
- In a skillet, heat up olive oil and add garlic, onions, carrots, celery, basil, oregano, and parsley and saute for about 2 minutes. (If you prefer fewer dishes, you can use the same pan you cooked the bacon in and use a bit of the bacon grease.)
- When the potatoes are almost fully cooked, drain about half of the water and return to heat. Add in enough milk or cream to fully cover the potatoes by about 2 inches.
- Add in sauteed vegetables and seasonings, as well as bacon and ham and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
- In a large mixing bowl, add egg yolks, whole egg, salt, oil, and water and whisk until mixture is frothy and all ingredients are well incorporated. Add enough flour to make a thick but sticky dough. (I would suggest starting out with 2 cups of flour and adding in more slowly until you get a sticky dough. Be careful not to overmix, however, or your dumplings will be tough.)
- When your soup has gotten to a slow boil, drop small portions (forkfuls) of the dumpling dough into the pot. Be sure not to get them too close or they’ll clump together. Lower your heat to a medium/ medium-low to prevent scorching and allow the dumplings to cook for 3-4 minutes to prevent clumping.
- Leave the soup on low heat, stirring occasionally until potatoes, vegetables, and dumplings are fully cooked. Add in shredded cheese as desired and salt and pepper to taste. More or less salt will be required, depending on your preference and the saltiness of the bacon and/or ham if you opt for adding it. You may also choose to add green onions on top before serving to add additional color and flavor.
Should you desire a thicker soup, add 1/2 cup flour to cold water and mix. I find a sports bottle or other bottle with a lid works best so you can shake it. Pour the mixture into your soup and continue cooking until it thickens and the flour taste is gone.
This hearty meal is wonderful on a cold winter evening and tastes even better the next day! Let me know if you try it out, have any recommendations or feedback!