Itâ€™s officially Sports Food season. Baseball playoffs are coming soon (go Red Sox!), generic college football is in full swing (go Eagles!) and the NFL is taking over Sundays and Mondays (go…uh…). This means lots of nachos, 7-layer dip, pizza, buffalo wings, blue cheese and other assorted Sporty Foods.
I happen to love Sporty foods. Last year, I made delicious chorizo nachos and boneless (organic and whole wheat) buffalo fingers for the Super Bowl. Itâ€™s all about bold, hearty food that pairs nicely with a beer, or two, or three… But soup? Can soup be a Sporty Food? Why yes, yes it can. This weekend, I made Loaded Baked Potato soup. Thick, creamy, topped with bacon, cheese and hot peppers, this soup can definitely hold its weight during the baseball playoffs or a football tailgating session.
You can set your soup station up like you would a taco or baked potato station: a big pot of soup, bowls and toppings. Begin with your potato soup and layer on as many toppings as youâ€™d like. Go crazy here â€“ anything goes. Personally, Iâ€™m all about bacon bits, cheddar cheese, chopped spinach, sour cream and jalapenos. Itâ€™s a fun, Sunday kind of soup, even if youâ€™d rather curl up with a good book or episode of Gossip Girl (What? Everyone has their guilty pleasures…) than a football team.
Loaded Baked Potato Soup
1.5 tbsp. olive oil
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 medium-sized Idaho (or creamer) potatoes (roughly 2.5 lbs.), diced
3 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup plain yogurt (Greek-style Yogurt is perfect here)
1 cup chopped spinach
6 slices bacon, cooked til crisp
6 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
1 â€“ 2 jalapeno or serrano peppers, thinly sliced
1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
More topping ideas:
Sauteed or steamed Broccoli
Anything you like to put on your baked potato goes!
Set a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Once itâ€™s hot, add the oil, onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, or until the onions are just starting to become translucent.
Add the diced potatoes and simmer for another couple of minutes, then add the chicken stock. Let the stock come to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 20 â€“ 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Remove from heat and stir in the yogurt.
Transfer half of the soup to a blender (or use an immersion blender) to puree about half of the soup. The potatoes should still be somewhat chunky, but also creamy.
Serve immediately and top with your favorite toppings.
Makes 6 servings.