Friday, October 18, 2013

Foodie Friday: Disaster Chef: Baked Potato Soup #projectpinterest

So this week I have a semi-success story for Project Pinterest to inspire any other aspiring cooks out there. This is a really easy recipe! It's only 4 ingredients, although as the original blog post says, it's really all about the toppings. It's a good starting point, but very simple and plain if you don't add some toppings (ie, boring).

Here's the recipe:
Soup Ingredients:
1 garlic clove bulb, with the top cut off
6 – 8 large baking potatoes, uncooked
3 – 4 cups chicken broth

1 Tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Tightly wrap the garlic bulb in foil. Rinse and pierce potatoes 9-12 times with a fork. Put the garlic and potatoes in the oven right on the rack.
Bake the garlic for 45 minutes then remove from oven. Allow the potatoes another 15 – 20 minutes in the oven. To tell if the potatoes are done they should be tender when you pierce them with a fork. Let the garlic and potatoes cool for at least 30 minutes. (I didn't do the whole letting them cool thing, but they turned out fine).
Peel garlic shell back to pull out cooked garlic pulp. Peel the potatoes with hands. Place the garlic pulp in a large saucepan, and using a potato masher mash the garlic. Next, add the potatoes to the saucepan and start mashing the potatoes and garlic together. Next, stir in the broth and fresh thyme until it is combined well. Cook the soup over medium heat until hot. Serve and add toppings of your choice.

I ended up only using 4 potatoes the first night, and a whole quart of broth because that's what I had in the fridge (and I may not have been paying as much attention to the recipe as I should have). So it was really soupy the first night. The next day I baked 4 more potatoes and added them, and it was nice and chunky and thick like the pictures showed, and much better all around. I threw some cheese and sour cream and olives on it, too. If you have some green onions, chives, bacon, or even salsa, that would probably be tasty, too.

The garlic was a bit tricky to get peeled, as it was pulpy mush and sticky, and the skins stuck to my fingers horribly. Also, peeling baked potatoes isn't as easy as it sounds. It is definitely time-consuming to scrape out the skins well, unless you want to leave a big portion of the potato stuck to the skins. So even though this recipe is simple and easy, it is not fast.

That said, it was very tasty both as a brothy soup and as a thick stew the next least it was after adding a bunch of toppings! I will definitely be adding this to my list of standbys. It's worth repeating.

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