Potato soup is one of our favourite home made soups. We have made it the traditional way with water to cook the potatoes and with chicken stock. Since we have a roast ham often we tried it with ham stock. Been making Congressional Bean, or Lentil soup with the ham stock we make but wanted a change. The potato soup using ham stock seemed like a good idea since bacon is part of any potato soup. It turned out great and blows any other potato soup away. It is actual easier than normal potato soup because you don’t have the bacon to crisp or the bacon fat to deal with.
4 litres of ham stock (that is what you end up with approx. when you make your stock)
2 cups of ham shredded (that is approx. what you get when you pick the bones carefully)
2 cups 1/4 in chopped onions
2 cups chopped celery
1 cup grated carrot
10 potatoes dice in 1/2 inch cubes
2 cloves garlic grated ( if you don’t have a micro grater you need to get one )
1 teaspoon thyme
1 and 1/2 cups half and half cream
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon butter
Add the onion, celery, carrot to a hot soup pot on medium high heat with 1 tablespoon of butter, cook for 3 minutes stirring often. Next add the stock, potatoes, ham, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low cover and cook for 1 and 1/2 hours. After an hour taste the stock and add more salt and pepper if needed. Check to make sure the potatoes are fully cooked. Mash the potatoes in the pot with a potato masher so that it is a smooth as you want it. I like to leave it chunky. Stir in the cream and parsley, heat till it starts to bubble and serve.
If you want you can turn it into clam chowder easily, if you like clam chowder. This is the change you need. 2 can of baby clam and replace the half and half with 1 cup of heavy cream. So when the potatoes are cooked add the clams with the liquid and cook 10 minutes longer and then mash, add the cream and completely mix, serve when hot.