This is a hearty, cozy soup that's great for chilly fall evenings. I like it with lots of the red pepper flakes. You can serve this as a main course for dinner, along with rye bread and apple pie for dessert. Recipe is from the Chicago Tribune.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 10 baby carrots
- 5 red potatoes, peeled,cut into large pieces
- 1 onion, sliced
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- fresh ground pepper, red pepper flakes
- 1 (12 ounce) bottle beer
- 2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans chicken broth or 2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans vegetable broth
- 1 1⁄2 cups grated cheddar cheese
- 1 cup cooked ham, shredded or julienned
- Heat butter in a large, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Add carrots, potatoes and onion; cook, stirring, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes.
- Add salt and pepper and red pepper flakes to taste.
- Add beer; heat to a boil, stirring to scrape up any browned bits.
- Add chicken broth; heat to a boil.
- Cook until potatoes and carrots are tender, about 12 minutes.
- Pour soup, in batches if necessary, into blender or food processor (or use a hand-held'boat motor' blender).
- Puree and return to saucepan.
- Stir in cheese; heat, stirring, until cheese is melted, about 2 minutes.
- Taste for seasoning; add more pepper flakes if needed.
- Ladle into bowls.
- Top each with shredded ham.