Creamy Ham and Potato Soup from Erin:
3 1/2 cups peeled and diced potatoes (2 potatoes)
1/3 cup diced celery (2-3 stalks)
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup carrot, diced (optional)
1 cup diced cooked ham (buy a ham steak in the deli section)
3 1/4 cups chicken broth
1/2 tsp salt. or to taste
1 tsp ground white or black pepper, or to taste
5 Tbsp butter
5 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
Note: can add a can of corn too.
1. Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, carrot, ham and chicken broth in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the salt and pepper.
2. In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk so that lumps don't form and until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through.
4. Top with cheddar cheese, chives and bacon if desired. Serve immediately.
5. Makes 6 servings.