Potato Soup

I like to try and keep a variety of soups in the freezer during the winter months.  Steaming hot soup and some fresh bread is a great quick and easy dinner. When you don’t feel like cooking it’s always nice if you can pull some soup from the freezer.  Most potato soups have milk and/ or cheese in them. You’ll never miss the milk/cheese in this diary free potato soup.  The ingredients in this hearty soup are simple and straightforward, but the ham and prosciutto add fabulous flavor. The prosciutto is optional and don’t worry if you decide not to use it because you will have plenty of flavor with the ham.
4 pounds of Yukon gold potatoes, 1 inch cubed (I leave the skin on)
2 onions, chopped
5 celery stalks, chopped
6-8 carrots, chopped (approximately 1 lb bag)
1 tsp garlic, minced
1-1.25 lbs ham (2-3 ¼ inch thick slices), cut into ½ inch squares
2 slices of prosciutto, very finely chopped (optional)
70-78 oz chicken stock
1 tbsp dried parsley
1-2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
·      Cut your ham.
·      In a stock pot, heat oil at medium-high heat. .
·      Add your ham and sauté until the pieces are slightly caramelized.
·      Remove from pot and set aside.
·      Add the prosciutto to the pot and cook until it starts to become crispy.
·      Add the chopped onions, celery, and carrots to the prosciutto. Cook until tender, approximately 20 minutes.
·      During the last 2-3 minutes of cooking the vegetables, add the garlic.
·      Dump the potatoes and ½ cup of ham into the pot of vegetables.
·      Pour 70 oz of stock into the pot. Add additional stock until the potatoes are covered.
·      Bring to a boil and simmer for 30-40 minutes. Make sure the potatoes are tender.
·      Turn of the burner.
·      Blend with an immersion blender (food processor or blender) to desired thinness. I prefer to be pretty chucky.
·      Add the remaining ham and parsley to the pot and simmer for another 15 minutes.
·      Taste the soup before adding the salt. The ham (and prosciutto) will add plenty of salt.
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Lori Lavender Luz

This looks delish, and there's just enough winter left (not by the calendar, but by the weather)for me to make a batch. THANK YOU!