Daily Archives: April 26, 2010
I’ve been making this recipe for 20 years, it’s one of my all time favorite soups in the winter, and it’s also nice in spring.? Recently we had a baby shower for a coworker and it was a potluck style soup, salad and dessert luncheon.? I brought this soup, and there was none left at the end of the day.? I think they liked it, and you will too.? It keeps really well on the “warm” setting of the crockpot, making it an ideal dish to take to a potluck.? Chock full of potatoes, carrots, ham and shallots and packed with a full pound of extra sharp cheddar, you’ll be amazed at how fast and easy it goes together.
Ham and Cheddar Chowder
2 lbs. diced potatoes (use a 2 lb. bag of thawed, Southern style hashbrowns for an even faster prep time)
1 small to medium shallot
3 carrots, peeled
2 1/2 Cups of diced ham
32 oz. chicken broth
32 oz. half and half (whole milk can be used instead)
16 oz. extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
8 Tbsp. butter (1 stick)
8 Tbsp. Wondra flour (you can use regular flour as well)
2 tsp.?dry mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
In a five quart pan, combine chicken broth, potatoes, ham, salt and pepper.? Turn on heat to low.? Peel shallot and carrots and mince finely by hand or in a food processor or chopper.? What you use to cut it up isn’t as important as the fact that you get the pieces tiny.? Add to broth mixture and allow it to simmer until vegetables are tender, about half an hour.? If you’re using raw potatoes, it might take a bit longer.
In another large sauce pan, melt the butter.? Over medium heat, add flour and dry mustard, and whisk till combined.? Continue stirring the flour mixtures for a couple of minutes, letting it brown a bit to develop flavor.
Continually whisking, add the half and half.? Whisk until well combined.
Add all of the shredded sharp cheddar and whisk until melted and combined.
Sauce should thicken in about 8 minutes after after cheese melts.
Remove from heat and pour cheese sauce into the simmering ham and vegetable mixture, stirring well with a large spoon.? Over very low heat, stirring occasionally, continue cooking for another half hour.? Stir well, making sure nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan.
Remove to crock pot and keep warm.? Makes 12-16 1 Cup servings.
Now one of my friends couldn’t eat this because of the ham (she’s not allowed because of the sodium), and we were talking…this would be really good with any kind of meat–chicken, turkey, ham…even meatless, as a nice vegetarian dish (just substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth).? So make it up as it is, or adapt it to your tastes and dietary needs.? No matter how you cook it up, I bet you’ll be adding this to your repetoire of favorite soups.