My absolute favorite thing to eat when I am home alone is roasted garlic mashed potatoes. When David is away my dinners almost always consist of one item that most people would consider a side. No meat, no bread, that's it. For someone who loves to cook, I have to admit I don't have much appetite when it comes to eating alone.
What happens when I crave my favorite alone meal and I'm not alone? Most of the time it involves adding a salad and maybe pork chops. A couple of weeks ago I found this recipe for Potato Soup and I thought why not roast the garlic instead? It isn't quite as easy as simple mashed potatoes, but not quite as involved as a full meal. With our temperatures still dipping into the 20 below range a good potato soup really hits the spot.
A lot of people make roasting garlic more complicated than it needs to be. All I do is wrap a whole head of garlic in foil and toss it in a 350 degree oven until your whole house smells like garlic, about an hour.
Roasted Garlic and Potato Soup
adapted from Smitten Kitchen
1 head garlic, roasted
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 medium leeks, white and light green parts halved lengthwise, washed, and chopped small
5 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 bay leaves
2 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/3 cup sour cream
Ground black pepper
Minced fresh chives or scallions
In a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add leeks and cook them until soft (but not brown), about 5 minutes. Remove the individual cloves from their papery skins. Add roasted garlic cloves, broth, bay leaves and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Add potatoes and simmer, partially covered, until potatoes are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Discard bay leaves. Add sour cream to soup and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Adjust seasonings, adding more salt and pepper to taste. Using immersion blender, process soup until chunky-creamy, leaving lots of potato texture intact. (I removed a few spoonfuls of whole chunky potatoes before doing this.) Serve with your choice of toppings.