Sunday, December 03, 2006

Creamy Potato and Onion Soup

Calling this by such a mundane name as "potato and onion soup" hardly does it justice. This is immensely good soup which, despite being "creamy" contains no cream, is cheap, easy to make, and relatively healthy. It's especially satisfying in the colder months and can be a vegetarian meal by itself with a bit of crusty bread to dip in it.

I used to make this soup regularly several years ago until my husband went low carb and potatoes became verboten. Since I'm not likely to go to a lot of trouble making homemade soup for only myself, I just stopped making it. My husband has relaxed his carbohydrate restrictions and allows himself small portions of foods he once avoided entirely so this soup came back on the menu.

I've only ever made this recipe while living in Japan so I've always made it with Japanese green onions. These onions are large with hollow green stems and do not have a bulb. I believe that they are called "Welsh onions" in western countries and have a less pungent smell and a milder flavor than scallions or smaller green onions which resemble chives. I think the small green onions wouldn't work as well in the soup so, if you try this recipe, look for onions that resemble the ones above. They are about 15 inches long and about a half inch in diameter. However, if anyone does attempt it with smaller onions and feels it works well, please let me know.

The only substitution I had to make in this recipe because I live in Japan is using chicken consumme cubes instead of canned chicken soup stock. The soup didn't appear to suffer at all for this substitution but those who are sensitive to salt may have to use canned low-sodium chicken stock (which cannot be purchased in Japan).

This soup freezes well so you can store the rest for future consumption if you live alone and don't want to eat soup for a week. ;-)

Creamy Potato and Onion Soup:

2 tbsp. butter
3 tbsp. flour
3 cloves of garlic
3 negi (green onions)/Welsh onions
1 white onion (medium-sized)
4 large potatoes or 6 small ones
4 cups of chicken stock or 4 cups of very hot water with 10 cubes of chicken consomme dissolved in it
1 cup of milk
pepper to taste

Peel the potatoes and cut them into bite-size pieces. Let them soak in cold water to let get rid of some of the starch. You can soak them for awhile then change the water to remove more starch. Chop the negi/Welsh onions finely. Dice the white onion. Peel and mince the garlic.

In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the flour and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the minced garlic and stir. Cook for another minute. Add both the negi/Welsh onion and white onion and stir to coat. Slowly add the chicken stock/consomme and stir it into the onions. Allow this to come to a boil. Add the milk, potatoes, and pepper. Simmer on low heat until the potatoes are tender. Stir occasionally.

The soup will appear relatively thin at first (like the above picture) but thicken as it cooks. If you'd like thicker soup, scoop out two cups of the potatoes and onions (try not to take much liquid) and puree them in a blender or food processor. Stir the pureed vegetables into the rest of the soup for an extra creamy soup.

Makes 6-8 servings.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the information.

I'm a vegetarian living in Tokyo. It's chilly now, and I've heard that negi can be good for preventing colds.

I went to the store and I'm gonna make your soup now.

Thanks again.

Shari said...

You're quite welcome and I hope you enjoy it as much as we do. :-)

Devin said...

This soup is amazing!!
With nothing but an abundance of potatoes in the cupboard, I needed something to make and came across your recipe courtesy of google.

It's brilliant. Your instructions are clear, fool proof, and the images provided gave me an excellent idea of how the soup was meant to look at each stage!

Thank you SO much for sharing this. I've got it just finishing on the stove right now. I'm definitely making this for all of my friends! They simply MUST try it! It's that good.

Domo arigato gozaimasu!