Saturday, December 22, 2012

Potato soup

I made another Winner Dinner the other day.   It was the second one in six months.  I'm trying to decide whether this is an accomplishment or  if maybe they should be coming more frequently.  A winner dinner has to be healthy and a big hit with the majority of the family.  Considering the less than mature taste buds I have to work with, twice in six months may not be that bad.

It was potato soup.  In the middle of dinner Ty asked me for the recipe.  Then he and Jack started imagining the response they would get in their own homes when they were men if they served this meal. 

Jack:  "I think when I'm a man and if I'm not in the air force (what does that have to do with it?) and I have a wife.... if I made this for her she would say: "Jack --I interrupt with: "Do you think she will call you Jack?  Or will she call you Sweetie pie?"

There was a pause, then he responds:  "Or she might call me 'Jackson.'"

True.  Go on.

"If I make it for her, she might say: "Jackson, this is good."

Yes. She might. 

Ty,  You wanted the recipe for the soup, so I'll give it to you.  You have to follow it to a t or it won't taste the same.  I've made potato soup more times than you've brushed your teeth and I've never had such rave reviews, so pay attention.  I'll try to be as specific as possible.

Jack and Ty's potato soup

Why am I titling it this?  Because you two helped make it.  and "no, I do not think that is the secret to my recent culinary breakthrough." Don't get too big for your britches.  You guys were just the prep staff.


1/2 lb. country sausage
1/2 onion
2 cans chicken broth
5 potatoes
2 C milk
1/3 C flour
1/2 stick of butter
2 thick slices of ham cubed

Wait to begin dinner till 5:00.  It creates a since of urgency to get dinner out before everyones blood sugar falls so low that all body functions shut down with the exception of the voice box. 

Find a bored 6 year-old and a bored 4 year-old.  Hand them both knives.  Your goal is to provide the children with an activity, avoid sliced fingers, prepare a healthy meal and teach said children to love cooking and feel a sense of accomplishment at their work.  I guess I should have listed the first ingredient as "pressure".

1.  Apply pressure (to oneself)

2. Put a large pot on the stove and turn it on high.  Immediately forget about the pot.

3. Get out 5 medium potatoes and 4 carrots.  Hand them to the children wielding knives.  Show them how to peal the vegetables.  Exchange the knives with potato peelers.

4.   Take out the country sausage.  Cut open packaging to reveal the weirdest looking sausage you've ever seen.  White/pink instead of pink/red.  Call your Arkansasan friend (who you make fun of on a regular basis for being from Arkansas) and ask them what kind of meat Arkansasans use to make country sausage.  She doesn't answer --could you blame her?  Call your other friend.  She doesn't answer either.  Question whether they are really your friends.  Use meat anyway.

5.  Put the mystery meat in your wanna be non-stick skillet.  Cook meat.  Try not to burn.

6.  Check on prep chefs.  Discard the pealed to obliteration carrot.  Show the four-year-old how to peal around the carrot, only getting rid of the outside.

7.  Chop half an onion.

8.  Remember the pot you put on the stove and turned on high.  Turn it down to medium, but don't give it time to cool off before pouring in your two cans of chicken broth.

9.  Watch the chicken broth sizzle and evaporate.  (who knows how much was actually left)

10.  Pour off the sausage grease, then saute the onion with the practically done sausage.

11.  Chop up what is left of the carrots after being pealed.

12.  Hand the four-year-old a knife and tell him to slice the potatoes.  Tell the six-year-old he is doing great.  Explain to him how important his job of pealing potatoes is --people join the army just so they can do this.

13.  This is an unlucky step.  We practically have a recipe for disaster already so let's just move on to step 14.

14.  Put chopped potatoes and carrots in the chicken broth.  Put lid on pot.  Let cook for 15 minutes.

15.  Melt butter in a small sauce pan on the stove over medium heat.  In a separate dish mix milk and flour.  Pour the mixture in with the butter.   Have the six-year-old stir constantly while the four-year-old puts spoons and napkins on the table.

16.  When thick (5 minutes later) pour into the big pot full of cooked potatoes. 

17.  Mash (or smash as they say in Arkansas) the potatoes by using the little wand mixer.

18.  Add in the sausage and onion.  Cube some ham and add it too.

19.  Salt and pepper to taste

Now your soup is ready to go.

Sit back and enjoy with oyster crackers and a glass of water. 

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