Cheddar And Potato Soup

1/4 cup butter
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons dry mustard
3 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup grated carrots
3 cups potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch slices
2 1/2 cups half-and-half
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Salt an pepper to taste
Finely chopped celery leaves (optional garnish)

In a large saucepan, sauté the onion in butter over moderate heat until soft. Stir in flour and dry mustard. Continue to stir for 1 to 2 minutes without browning flour. Add broth and bring to a simmer, stirring until soup is smooth. Add carrots and potatoes.

Simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes. Add half-and-half and bring again to a simmer. (Recipe may be done ahead to this point. Reheat soup before continuing.)

Reduce heat to low and stir in cheese until melted. Season with salt and pepper and serve garnished with optional celery leaves.

Serves 6 as a first course.

From “Chicago Tribune Magazine,” October 24, 1993, courtesy William Rice, adapted from “Northwest Bounty” by Schuyler Ingle and Sharon Kramis.

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