This potato soup is spiced up with cayenne pepper, ladled over grated Gruyère, and topped with sliced scallions, giving a full complement of flavors and textures that is fun to eat and delicious.
Note: If you have leftover mashed potatoes, this is a great way to use them; you’ll need about 2 cups. Start the recipe after the food-mill step, adding the potatoes to a pot, leaving out half of the cream and milk, and substituting chicken stock for the cooking liquid.—Jimmy Bradley and Andrew Friedman
3 tablespoons butter
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 1/2 pounds (about 2 medium) Idaho potatoes, peeled and quartered
3 cups homemade chicken stock or low-sodium, store-bought chicken broth
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup (about 6 ounces) grated Gruyère cheese
2 teaspoons hot paprika
2 scallions, white and green parts, finely sliced
1. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and saute until softened but not browned, approximately 3 minutes.
2. Add the potatoes, chicken stock, and 3 cups water. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat so the liquid simmers. Cook until the potatoes are soft to a knife-tip, approximately 15 minutes. Pour the contents of the pot into a fine-mesh strainer set over a bowl. Set the cooking liquid aside.
3. Pass the potatoes through a food mill or ricer. Return the potatoes to the pot over medium heat and add the milk, cream, and 1 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid. Whisk gently to incorporate, but do not overwork the potatoes. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste. Finish by whisking in the remaining tablespoon butter.
4. To serve, put some shredded Gruyère in the bottom of each of 4 bowls, and ladle in the hot soup. Garnish with a dusting of paprika and the scallions.
Recipe © 2006 by Jimmy Bradley. All rights reserved.