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Cream of Potato Soup – reduced fat

Today’s recipe is for a hearty soup whose warmth is just right for the cold weather outside. Plus it just might cure what ails you, as a friend who had been feeling ill said eating this soup made her feel all better.

Cream of Potato Soup

My first thought was to use some extra potatoes that were left in the pantry to make a baked potato soup with cheese, but after some discussion I decided to make a low fat version with a creamy base not created from using fatty ingredients, but by pureeing some of the potato with my brand new stick blender. I had already used this method recently to make a thick soup base from cooked cauliflower in an excellent corn and seafood chowder.

Here is my recipe for Low Fat Cream of Potato Soup for you to try and enjoy.

Cream of Potato Soup

4 Russet Potatoes, medium sized, peeled and cubed
3 Yukon Gold Potatoes, sliced thinly (with skin, omitting end pieces)
4 c Chicken Broth
1 Yellow Onion, medium
1 T Butter
4 cloves Garlic, thinly sliced
¼ t Red Pepper Flakes
½ t Black Pepper
½ t Salt, Kosher
3 Scallions

Melt butter in pot and sauté ½ of the yellow onion, diced, until translucent. Add 2 cups chicken broth and 3 of the russet potatoes that have been peeled and cubed. Bring to a boil and then simmer covered until potatoes are fork tender.

With your stick blender puree the cooked onions and potatoes in the pot until smooth.

Add the remaining 2 cups chicken broth along with the single cubed russet potato, the sliced Yukon Gold Potatoes, and the other ½ yellow onion which has been roughly chopped. Bring to a boil then simmer covered for 5 minutes.

Add the red pepper flakes, black pepper, kosher salt, and thinly sliced garlic. Simmer covered another 5 minutes, then add the chopped scallions, turn off the heat and let sit covered an additional 5 minutes.

Serve and enjoy.

Mexican Four Bean Salad

If you love TexMex style dishes, you will love my spin on three bean salad. This dish is not only delicious, but beautiful. It has many layers of flavors and will be a refreshing addition to any meal from South of the border.

Mexican Four Bean Salad


1 lb Black beans * (or one 15 oz can rinsed and drained)
1 lb Pinto beans * (or one 15 oz can rinsed and drained)
1 lb Green beans ** (or one 15 oz can rinsed and drained)
1 lb White beans * (or one 15 oz can rinsed and drained)
1 lb Corn, whole (grilled then cut from cob, or a one pound package frozen – thawed)
3 Green onions, sliced
½ c Cilantro, chopped

1 lb Cotija cheese

2 Jalapenos, seeded, chopped
3 Garlic cloves, sliced thinly
½ c Olive oil
½ c Lime juice
6 T Sugar
1 ½ t Salt
1 T Pepper
1 T Cumin
1 t Chili powder
½ t Red pepper flakes

In a large bowl, mix together beans, corn, green onions and cilantro.

In a separate bowl, mix together olive oil, lime juice and the remainder of the ingredients listed.

Make the marinade and mix the vegetables (but not the cheese) and place in separate containers in the refrigerator one day in advance.

The night before the meal, toss the vegetables with the marinade. Cut Cotija cheese into small cubes, and toss gently with marinated vegetables. Cover and refrigerate overnight.


* Final weight after cooked, drained, and cooled. This requires about 6.5 ounces of dried beans per recipe.

** To prepare green beans trim off stem end, cut into 1” sections, drop into boiling water for five minutes, drain and place in bowl of ice water for five minutes, then drain.

French Red Onion Soup

This is a delightful twist to a popular soup dish that is delicious, quick, easy, and inexpensive to make. The red and sweet bulb onions offer a flavor and presentation that add a new dimension to classic French Onion Soup which I think you will enjoy.

Although onions and onion soups were enjoyed by the ancient Greeks and Romans, the oldest reference I could find for French Onion Soup is from 1651: “Potage of onion. Cut your onions into very thin slices, fry them with butter, and after they are fried put them into a pot with water or with pease broth. After they are well sod, put in it a crust of bread and let it boile a very little; you may put some capers in it. Dry your bread then stove it; take up, and serve with one drop of vinegar.” —The French Cook, Francois Pierre La Varenne, [1651] Englished by I.D.G. 1653, Introduced by Philip and Mary Hyman [Southover Press:East Sussex] 2001 (p. 130)

The word “soup” comes from the word “sop.” Sop, because previous generations did not have the availability of utensils we have today, so bread was the means used to eat the soup by “sopping” it in the liquid.

Bon Appétit

French Red Onion Soup

French Red Onion Soup

1 Red onion, medium
1 Sweet bulb onion
4 T Butter

4 c Beef broth

1 T Balsamic vinegar
1 T Worcestershire sauce
½ t Tarragon, dried
¾ t Pepper, ground
Salt to taste

1 loaf French bread
Olive Oil
Garlic, minced
Parsley, dried
Gruyere or Swiss cheese, freshly grated

Chop onions and sauté in butter until soft and caramelized (browned). Do not add salt until after this point else you will end up with wilted onions.

Add broth, vinegar, Worcestershire Sauce, dried tarragon, and pepper. Bring to a boil then simmer for 15 – 20 minutes.

Slice bread lengthwise and then into pieces that will fit in your soup bowls and place on baking pan.

Mince garlic and blend with olive oil. Brush olive oil and garlic blend on each bread face then sprinkle with dried parsley. Broil until bread begins to brown.

Grate cheese and sprinkle over bread slices. Then return pan to oven under the broiler until the cheese melts.

Place a slice of bread in each bowl and ladle soup over it.

Serve immediately.

Creamy Parmesan and Bacon Cauliflower Soup

I have had a head of cauliflower staring at me in my refrigerator ever since I bought it a few weeks ago to add to some pickled vegetables. After adding all the other ingredients to the pickles, I ran out of room for the cauliflower so it was sent into storage.

Of course fresh produce can’t sit around for very long before its quality starts to degrade, it goes bad and eventually has to be discarded. This is something I try to avoid, so either I only purchase fresh produce if I have a specific use planned for it, or come up with a use in a relatively short period of time.

I happened to be working from home today, and it is a little chilly outside, so some fresh hot soup sounded really good.

Creamy Parmesan and Bacon Cauliflower Soup

Here is the recipe I put together for Cauliflower soup that I think you will really enjoy. In my household is a particularly finicky eater who told me they LOVED it! I hope you do too.

Creamy Parmesan and Bacon Cauliflower Soup

4 T Butter

1 small Onion, yellow diced
2 small Carrot, thinly sliced
2 stalk Celery, thinly sliced
1 Sweet bulb onion, diced
1 head Cauliflower coarsely chopped

2 qts Chicken broth

4 slices Bacon, thickly sliced
6 T Flour
2 c Milk
1 c Cream
1 c Parmesan cheese

1 T Salt, Kosher
1 T Pepper, ground

Sour Cream, room temperature

In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Add the diced onion and cook until it becomes translucent. Then add the carrots, celery & sweet bulb onion and cook until tender.

Add cauliflower, cover and cook over low heat for 15 minutes.

Pour in chicken broth, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer for 15 minutes.

In a large saucepan cook bacon until crispy. Remove bacon, reserving bacon fat. Add enough butter to the bacon fat in the pan to make 4 tablespoons total fat. Add flour and combine.

Add milk & cream and whisk until thick and smooth. Mix in Parmesan cheese.

Crumble the bacon and add to the soup along with this mixture and the salt & pepper.

Cook on medium until fully heated.

Pour into bowls and serve with a spoonful of sour cream on top.