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| BAKED POTATO SOUP
4 large baking potatoes
2/3 c butter
2/3 c flour
6 to 7 c milk (or more as needed to reach desired consistency)
salt and pepper to taste
1 c sour cream
4 green onions, chopped (or 1/2 c onion, chopped and sauted until tender plus 1 tsp dried chives)
1 1/2 c cheddar cheese, grated
crisp bacon, crumbled, or real bacon bits, if desired
Wash and dry potatoes. Rub skins lightly with vegetable oil or shortening. Bake in 450 degree oven about 1 hr or until soft.
Melt butter over low heat in large heavy pan.
Slowly blend in flour, using a wire whisk and cook for 1 min.
Gradually add milk to roux, whisking constantly.
Add salt and pepper.
Cut potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop out insides.
Mash potatoes slightly but leave some chunks.
Chop half the potato skins, discarding the rest.
Add potatoes, skins, green onions, and sour cream.
Heat thoroughly and remove from heat.
Stir in cheese a little at a time.
Top each serving with crumbled bacon or real bacon bits, if desired.
*I reheat leftover soup in the microwave since it scorches so easily if heated on the stovetop.
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