I found this soup on a popular recipe sharing site - it had earned the highest rating of 5 stars after more than 6,000 reviews so naturally, I had to make it right away. I prepared the first batch as the recipe was written and it was quite tasty, but I knew I could get even more flavor by tweaking here and there - so that's the version I'll share with you today. The family loved it (even my picky eater), and my neighbor asked for the recipe after she enjoyed 2 bowls. This one's a winner folks.
5-Star Ham and Potato Soup
4 cups peeled and diced thin-skinned red or white potatoes (not baking potatoes such as Russets, Idaho, etc)
4 cups very flavorful homemade chicken stock
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 bay leaf
6 tablespoons butter, divided
1/3 cup diced celery
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
3-4 cups diced cooked ham
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups milk
Optional Garnish: fresh parsley, chives, scallions, cheese, bacon, crackers, croutons, etc
Place the diced potatoes, dried parsley, and bay leaf in a medium saucepan and cover with chicken stock.
Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium and cook until potatoes are tender, 15-20 minutes.
Remove saucepan from heat; do not drain.
In a large skillet, saute the ham, onions, and celery in 1 tablespoon of butter until the vegetables are soft and translucent.
Add mixture to the potato and chicken stock mixture.
In the same large skillet, melt the remaining 5 tablespoons butter.
Add the four, salt, and pepper and whisk until combined, continue whisking for 1-2 minutes to cook the raw flavor out of the flour.
Slowly add the milk and whisk to combine; continue whisking until the mixture thickens and begins to bubble; pour mixture into the saucepan that contain the ham and potatoes; stir to combine. Garnish and serve.
adapted from allrecipes.com