Sunday, February 10, 2013

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

This cold and wintry weather we have been having here on the East Coast has really made me crave soups.  I'm the strange kind of person that could always eat soup, even when it's well into the 90's in the heat of the summer.  Not sure why, but I love them.  Usually the brothier the soup the better.  Sometimes though, I find myself craving a thick, hearty soup.  That's usually the kind of soup my Husband loves to eat.  I had the idea for this soup from seeing it at the coop here in Brooklyn, although it was not vegan at all, not even vegetarian.  Definitely full of cream, butter, milk and of course bacon.  I have a great tempeh bacon recipe myself, so I could easily see this soup come together.  And who doesn't love potatoes, bacon (vegan that is) and smoky deliciousness?  So I wrote down everything I think would make this into a delicious thick and hearty soup and went from there.  And it turned out deliciously, with Hubbs eating two full bowls of it!  

Note that this makes quite a bit of soup (3 quarts), so you can either halve the recipe, invite friends over for a soup and salad party or freeze whatever you don't use for a quick dinner later.

Loaded Baked Potato Soup:

So creamy & delicious with those amazing toppings!

Makes 3 Quarts

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2.5 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 quarts vegetable stock
4 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoons chipotle pepper powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups unsweetened soymilk
1/2 cup vegan sour cream
2 tablespoons earth balance

1scallion, chopped
2 tablespoons shredded vegan cheese
2 pieces homemade cooked & chopped tempeh bacon

1.  In a large pot over medium heat add the olive oil and allow it to become hot. 
2.  Once it is hot, add the onions and garlic and cook for several minutes until translucent.
3.  Add the potatoes and all the spices: the salt, smoked paprika, onion and garlic powder, chipotle pepper powder and black pepper.  Toss to coat the potatoes and onions in the spices and allow mixture to cook for a couple minutes. 
4.  Add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil.  Once the ingredients begin to boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are cooked all the way through.
5.  Add the earth balance and sour cream to the pot and allow to melt.  Stir to combine.  Add the unsweetened soymilk and stir. 
6.  In batches, transfer the hot soup to a blender of food processor (be very careful!!).  Place a dry towel over the lid of the machine and blend until completely smooth, but not too long or the potatoes will become gluey.
7.  Return the pureed soup back to a clean pot and bring back up to a simmer.  Season to taste.
8.  To serve, top with the vegan cheese, scallions and tempeh bacon. 
9.  Serve.  That's it!



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