Cooking with Chives
The only thing I have harvestable in the garden at the moment are chives. The rest of my herbs did not fair well this winter. But my chives are as happy as can be!
Chives are very easy to grow. They are a perennial and are very low maintenance (I hardly even water them!) All I really have to do is give them a haircut every once in a while before they flower so more chives grow. I also let them flower as well because they get little purple flowers that are pretty and editable (they look really pretty as a garnish on deviled eggs).
What pairs well with chives? Potatoes!!! I decided instead of doing a regular or even a twice baked potato with chives sprinkled on top, I would try something new: a loaded potato soup. Add some sharp cheddar, bacon, butter, and cream to the mix and you have a hearty soup perfect for the cool days of early spring!
*A few notes:
- I used pepper bacon. You can use whatever flavor you like.
- You can also play around with the milk and stock ratio. More milk will make it creamier and richer.
- I like a lot of garlic in everything. By all means, add or decrease to your liking
A loaded baked potato in a bowl! This hearty soup has all the fixins of a scrumptious baked potato.
Loaded Potato Soup Recipe
- 4 slices of bacon, chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 4 russet potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 3 cups of broth
- 1 cup of milk
- 1/2 cup of half and half
- 1/2 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 4 tbs of butter
- Fresh chopped Chives
- Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- Cook the chopped bacon in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat until crisp, stirring occasionally about 10-12 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Pour out all but 2 tablespoons of the fat from the pot; reserve the pot.
- Add the onion and garlic to the reserved pot. Cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 6 to 8 minutes.
- Add the potatoes, broth, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are very soft (almost falling apart).
- Add the milk and half and half. Simmer until slightly thicken, about 10 minutes.
- Use an immersion blender and blend the soup until there aren't any vegetable chunks and the soup is smooth. Add the butter and cheddar cheese and stir until full incorporated.
- Serve warm topped with the cheddar, chives, and reserved bacon.
*If you do not have an immersion blender, you can puree the soup a few cup fulls at a time in a blender. Do not fill the hot liquid all the way to the top of the blender! To be safe, it is recommended when you blend hot liquids that you never fill the jar more than half-full. Put the lid on, then cover it with a dry towel, and hold it down by hand. Also, use as slow a speed as possible.
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