Queso Potato Chowder

The hash browns in this recipe add a fun twist to baked potato soup.


1/4 cup butter
1 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1 cup finely chopped onion
3 poblano peppers, seeded and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 (20 oz.) package hash brown potatoes
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2-14 oz. cans chicken broth
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup half-and-half
1 cup freshly shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup freshly shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat; add bell pepper and next 3 ingredients, and sauté 4-5 minutes or until tender.  Add potatoes and cumin, and sauté 5 minutes or until browned and tender.  Gradually stir in broth, stirring to loosen particles from bottom of Dutch oven.  Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 25 minutes.  Whisk together flour, milk, and half-and-half.  Stir into potato mixture, and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly 5 minutes or until thickened.  Reduce heat to low.  Add cheeses, and cook, stirring constantly until cheeses melt and mixture is thoroughly heated.

Yield:  9 cups.

Recipe from Southern Living Magazine