Yesterday, I had a lovely meal with my boyfriend at The Crazy Pig in Hammond, Louisiana. I enjoyed every bite of my shrimp po'boy with fries and fried mushrooms with ranch. Let me digress for one moment and explain to you all one thing. I. LOVE. RANCH. I could marry ranch, I love it so much. Ranch and I would live happily ever after, because really, who divorces ranch? I could stick a straw in it and drink it on the spot. I never have, let me be clear. I'm just sayin'...
Anyway, I was fine for the rest of the day, and I even had a small snack of Funyuns after a light nap. However, as the night wore on, so did the inner lining of my stomach. Needless to say, I was up until five in the morning "wishing I were dead."
Because I was up so late, I slept until noon today, at which time the boyfriend was already at work. When I called to apologize for keeping him up half the night with my pukey-ness (when he had to be up early for work, no less), he told me he was on his way back home because he had already tossed some cookies of his own. Great... now I've contaminated him.
After he got home, I considered some lunchtime possibilities that would sit well on both of our stomachs. The only soup I happened to have on hand was some broccoli cheese in a can. From what you all have learned about me thus far, you should know better of me than to think that I could ever just open a can, heat it up, and serve it. Oh, no. I've got to add my own twist to it. If I can't make it from scratch then, by Jeebus, I'm at least going to make it my own.
That being said, I bring you this edition of Amateur Noms, Broccoli-Baked Potato Soup. This recipe takes a mere 20 minutes from start to finish, and you will never know that the finished product came from a can. The end result is comforting and delicious. Just the ticket for the road to recovery--or just a quick weeknight meal.
P.S.--Sorry there's only one picture this time. I'm sick and lazy. We'll return to our regularly scheduled programming soon.
This recipe is dedicated to a reader who sent me a recipe of her own this week. It made my day and I can't wait to try it! Thank you so much!
Jazzed Up Canned Soup: Broccoli-Baked Potato
3 strips bacon, chopped
1 yukon gold potato, diced
1 can broccoli cheese soup (I used Campbells)
1 can's worth of milk (about 10 ounces, as per soup instructions)
2 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup EACH sharp cheddar, smoked Gouda, and colby jack mix, shredded or diced
Optional: 2 tablespoons cheddar for garnish, crackers
1 2-quart saucepan, or larger
Paper towel-lined bowl or plate
1. Over medium heat, cook the bacon in the saucepan until very crunchy. The goal is to "overcook" the bacon so it doesn't become chewy when added back into the soup later.
2. With a slotted spoon, pull the cooked bacon from the saucepan and allow it to drain on a paper towel-lined plate or bowl. Use the bacon fat to saute the potato until the outside is toasty brown and firm**. Once again, by ensuring the outside is crunchy, you are also ensuring the potato bits will retain their shape and won't dissolve into the soup.
3. Pour the soup into the saucepan, followed by the milk, and stir until combined. Lower the heat to medium-low.
4. Return the bacon to the saucepan. Then add the cheeses. Cook over medium low heat for 10 minutes.
5. To serve, ladle into soup bowls, top with extra cheese as a garnish, and serve with crackers. My favorite way to eat it is to pour some Cheez-its into the bowl with my soup. Mmmm!
**For those of you freaking out at my use of bacon fat to cook the potatoes, feel free to use olive oil, or any other oil of your liking. Me? I'm lazy, and the bacon fat is there. It's an easy choice for me. Enjoy!