1. Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, ham and water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the chicken bouillon, salt and pepper.
2. In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk as not to allow lumps to form until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through. Serve immediately.
My Note: Sometime I do a few changes I do at time to play with my food -- I didn't bother peeling the potatoes, just washed and diced them up. Also added some chopped carrots for color and flavor. Only added about 1/2tsp of pepper and no extra salt, just the boullion. I like my potatoe soup a little bit thicker than it turned out. I'm not sure if I did something wrong with the flour mixture or if it's just a thinner broth. So I mashed the veges real lightly with potatoe masher and added instant mashed potatoe flakes to thicken it up a bit!
This is one of the best ham & potato soups I've ever did! I'm always looking for ham recipes, as I often buy a half fully cooked ham, cube, and divide up into freezer bags for quick meals. Making the white sauce separately really added the right creaminess to the potato/ham & veggie mixture. I used a can of chicken broth for part of the liquid, as I didn't have any bullion. Also threw in some shredded carrots I had on hand, plus 1/2 cup shredded cheese to the white sauce after it had thickened. Also, (to disguise the carrots), added a sprinkle of cheese to each bowl upon serving. Very creamy and tasty. A possibly adding corn next time.
I used a ham bone with a little meat left on it. I boiled it to make stock and used this in place of the water. Then stripped the meat off the bone to use in the soup. I also put a few sprigs of fresh thyme in it -- the result was soooo good. I made it for a friend who was sick and her husband was begging me to get them a pizza and let us have the soup!. I sauted the onions in a little vegetable oil until soft, added all the ingredients except the butter/flour and milk to the crockpot and cooked all day until the potatoes were nice and soft. I also added one diced carrot. About an hour before dinner I made the rue with the flour and butter and used a 12 oz. and 5 oz. can of evaporated milk instead of regular milk. I don't like to use regular milk in crockpot recipes because it sometimes curdles on me. I added about a 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder to the soup, it just seemed like it needed a little something when I tasted it before serving. Topped each bowl of soup with fresh ground pepper and sliced green onions. This soup is rich, thick and creamy. Very hearty and filling, perfect for a cold winter night meal! My family really enjoyed this served with a homemade cheesy garlic pizza.