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Entries in Copycat (1)

Sunday
Dec082013

Bennigan's Potato Soup

Potato soup

I have fond memories of going to Bennigan’s with my family as a kid. Besides Chi Chi’s, it was my favorite. I seemed to remember that at the end of the meal, on our way out the door we could pick something out of their toy chest of awesome {read: cheap-o} toys, however Joel and my brother both tell me that was only at the Ground Round. In any event, even though the kid in me enjoyed that part, the Irish pub feel always made me feel a bit more grown up. I knew I was “grown up” when I was allowed to order a cup of soup before my dinner. At Bennigan’s, that cup of soup of choice was always potato soup. So, you better believe that when I found a copycat recipe online, I felt like I just had to make it, for nostalgia sake. I can’t say I remember exactly how the soup at Bennigan’s tasted for the sake of comparison, as the restaurant closed quite a number of years ago, but this homemade version was absolutely delicious! This warm and hearty soup is quick cooking, so it’s perfect for a weeknight, too!

3 pounds Potatoes, scrubbed clean (I used red potatoes)
1 tablespoon Butter
1 Onion, finely chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 can (14 ounces) Chicken or Vegetable Broth
3 cups Milk (I used skim)
1 teaspoon Salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon Pepper, or to taste

Optional Garnishes:
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Crumbled Bacon
Chopped Scallions
Chopped Parsley

To cook the potatoes, poke them with a fork several times and bake at 400 degrees for an hour, or until they are tender when pierced. (To make this more quick-cooking, you can also cook the poked potatoes in the microwave on the potato setting, which took me about 12 minutes). If you use a baking potato, allow them to cool and then peel. If you use red potatoes, leave the skins on. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, cover and let cook for about 10 minutes until they are soft, but not browned. Add 2/3 of the potatoes and mash using a potato masher. Add the chicken broth, milk, salt, and pepper. (At this point, I also used my immersion blender to mash the potatoes, since my masher didn’t do a great job). Raise the heat to medium-high and bring the soup to a low simmer, stirring occasionally. Chop the remaining potatoes into small cubes then add to the soup, stirring gently until warmed through. Ladle the soup into serving bowls and garnish with the optional garnishes, if desired. 

SOURCE: Southern Mother