Autumn is coming on pretty quickly now, and whenever I start to feel that first chill in the air, my attention turns to all of the comfort foods of the season – casseroles, stews, and soup. Especially soup! And not just any kind of soup, either. Usually, this time of year, I start to all-out crave Cheesy Potato Soup.
And I’m so excited today because I just found this awesome new recipe for that very thing. Cheesy Potato Soup! And the best part about it? It’s low in fat! “What?” you ask? You heard me right! I found a recipe for creamy, cheesy potato soup that is actually low in fat.
Some of the earliest recipes for potato soup come to us from Ireland. Many of us associate potatoes with the Green Isle for many reasons, even believing it originated there. Interestingly enough, though, it did not! The Spanish actually brought the illustrious potato to Europe in 1570. The conquistadores had discovered it in Peru where the Incas were not only growing it for food, they were also using it for medicine. But when the potato first made it to Europe, it was not eagerly accepted. Nope! Potatoes were looked upon suspiciously, thought to be “evil”, and even accused of causing leprosy, syphilis, and inappropriate sexual behaviour. Seriously, who knew the lowly potato could cause such a commotion? It clearly needed a few years – or a hundred – to fully integrate into European culture.
A few famous Europeans helped popularize potatoes in their new environment, including
Queen Elizabeth, who gave Sir Walter Raleigh some land in Ireland to grow tobacco and potatoes. Once the commoners saw the royals growing these strange new plants, they wanted to grow them as well. And from that time onward, the potato seemed to take root as if it had always grown there. It rapidly became Ireland’s greatest staple food, and the Irish invented many different ways of cooking it – including turning it into potato soup!
Because they were so easy to grow in the summer and store in the cooler months, potatoes were the central food for the Irish people’s diet from August to March every year. Perhaps this is why I start to crave potatoes every September – could it be my Irish genes? Their other main winter staple was oatmeal, and I seem to crave that in the cold weather too!
Thankfully, this recipe provides us with a new spin on a very ancient recipe, with a little extra flavour thrown in for good measure and a little extra fat removed for our good health. It calls for low-fat dairy ingredients, including low-fat sharp cheddar cheese and 1% milk as well as flour as a low-calorie thickening agent. Brilliant, huh? And if you like, you can even make this recipe even healthier by using organic ingredients, which may cost a wee bit more, but in the long run will be much better for you.
Be sure to watch the video for the full list of ingredients and cooking instructions before you start making this creamy, delicious, and low-fat Cheesy Potato Soup.