Don't you just love this time of year? Isn't it wonderful to finally be out of those 90 temperatures?

By Trish Morgan
For the News Tribune
Don't you just love this time of year? Isn't it wonderful to finally be out of those 90° temperatures?
Now, here I am right in the middle of my favorite month of the year. It's time for weekly homemade soups, and time for some fall cleaning and some interior renovations downstairs in my rec room and bathroom.
It's been a while since renovations have been at work here, and quite past due. Soon, there will be fresh paint, new walls, new curtains, a bathroom upgrade and a totally re-arranged rec room. All of this is way past due, and so necessary.
This home I live in was built by my family in 1969, and although there are times I dream of living in a vintage log cabin in the woods with a huge stone fireplace, this will always be home for me.
I am blessed to live in a small town in a really nice neighborhood - where my grandchildren can enjoy swimming in the backyard, bike and hoverboard riding, picnics and tea parties under my mom's weeping cherry tree, gymnastics in the yard, plenty of room for playing.
My grandchildren - running up and down the halls, toys and books scattered here and there, eating dinner in the same kitchen where my mom cooked for all of us - there's a lot to be said for tradition, for memories. Yes, I rather love it here.
Here - where there are dings in the walls, cat scratches on doorways, an old back door that desperately needs replaced, kitchen cabinets past their prime. Yes, this is home.
Starting this week, soup making begins. There's nothing like a big mug of soup, homemade rolls of all kinds and a cat and me by the fireplace. No more air conditioning, and soon, I suppose it will be time for some heat to take the chill off the house.
This week - homemade potato soup - tried and tested and family approved. A delicious blend of bite size baby red potatoes, celery and onion, milk, fresh parsley and cream. It's a little labor intensive to make, but seriously worth every bite.
I do some of the prep the night before, and the next morning I complete the final steps. Then, into the crockpot it goes on low for six hours. Ready to serve. Ladle a big mug-full, add a fingers-full of shredded cheddar cheese, toss in crumbled and crispy bacon, stir and enjoy. And don't forget a side of two fresh-baked homemade rolls with soft butter. Now, THIS is perfection. By the way, I make a variety of rolls - cheesy chedda, pepperoni, garlic parmesan, peanut butter/bacon (a must-try!) stuffed rolls and more.
I can't claim this recipe is mine. In fact, it is a recipe I found on Facebook and there was not a cook's name with the recipe. But, if you love soup night at your home, this recipe will produce a crockpot full of goodness.
At my home, I like to share, too. If you visit my Facebook page, watch for my "Soup Night" notices. If you see what I'm making and you'd like a quart, email me at tmorgan0305@gmail.com or send me a message on Facebook. I'll add you to my list!
Here's my recipe in case you ever get the urge to make this homemade soup this fall/winter:
THE BEST potato soup recipe ever!
Ingredients:
2-1/2 pounds baby red potatoes, sliced into small bite sized pieces
1/2 regular package uncooked bacon, finely diced
1 medium onion, diced (I only use 1/2)
1/4 bunch celery, diced
8 cups milk
4 cups water
4 chicken bouillon cubes (use a cup of the hot potato water to dissolve, then use the cup of hot water in place of one of the above cups of water)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup salted butter
3/4 cup flour
1/4 bunch freshly chopped parsley
1 cup whipping cream
***For garnish:***
Shredded mild cheddar cheese
fried bacon bits
chopped green onions (not for me LOL)
Directions:
In large pot, boil potatoes in water 10 minutes. Drain (make sure to save one cup of the potato water) and set aside. In sauté pan, cook bacon until crisp, taking care not to burn. Drain bacon fat, and place bacon on paper towel. Add a tablespoon or two of that bacon grease, onion and celery to the bacon pan over medium-high heat until celery is tender, about 5 minutes. To the large potato pan, add milk, water, bouillon, salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat until mixture is very hot, about 8 minutes, stirring often. Do not let mixture boil. In small, heavy saucepan melt butter. Add flour and mix well. Cook over medium-low heat until mixture bubbles, stirring 2 to 3 minutes to make a roux. While constantly stirring soup, add roux slowly until soup is thick and creamy, about 4 minutes. Stir in parsley, reserved potatoes, and cream. Crockpot on low for four-six hours. Garnish with cheese, bacon bits, onions or all three. Serve hot!
This soup is also delicious with a ham bone that you have reserved in the freezer from a baked ham instead of the bacon. Remove bone from crockpot before serving.
Soup's on! Eat it up!!