I have been on a potato soup odyssey. I want to recreate the tasty versions I have had a various bars and restaurants. This is my fourth version of potato soup. I was listening to the Splendid Table and heard Dawn Weld of the Rock Cafe talking about her potato soup and thought how am I going to get this recipe and then it showed up in my email (thank you Splendid Table).
The soup was good - I thought too much bacon and I didn't use all the water the recipe says to.
Potato Soup with Bacon
4 thick-cut bacon slices or whatever style you have on hand
1 small yellow onion, grated or finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely minced or pressed through a garlic press
2 teaspoons salt
9 (about 3 pounds) russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
2 cups whole or low-fat milk
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Finely chopped chives, for serving (optional)
For the bacon: Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place the bacon in the pan, reduce the heat to medium, and cook until browned and crisp, about 6 minutes. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Add the onion, garlic, and ¼ teaspoon of salt to the pan and cook until the onion is soft and the garlic is fragrant, about 2 minutes. Crumble the bacon back into the skillet, turn off the heat, and set aside.
Potatoes: Bring the potatoes to a boil in a large pot with 4 cups of water and 1-½ teaspoons of salt. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until they're tender and just starting to break apart, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat. Using a potato masher or wooden spoon, smash the potatoes in the pot with the water until they're mostly broken up (you want to keep some chunky potato bits).
Soup: Heat the milk in a small saucepan or the microwave until hot, and then add to the potatoes. Stir in the bacon and onion mixture, the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt, and the pepper. Return to the stove, and continue to simmer until the soup is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Sprinkle with chives, if using, and serve hot.