BAKED POTATO SOUP

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
sweet onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
leftover baked potatoes, diced with skin left on (or off, whatever you prefer)
1 cup leftover ham, diced finely, or 4 slices of bacon
1 quart chicken stock
salt & pepper, to taste
1 sprig rosemary (or any fresh herb like thyme or parsley, optional)
pinch of nutmeg
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 cup heavy cream or milk
toppings: green onions, shredded cheese, and/or sour cream

In a heavy-bottomed stock pot, heat butter and olive oil over med heat until warm.  Toss in onions, celery, and garlic.  Saute for a couple of minutes until translucent.  (Alternately, slice bacon into small bits, sauté in pot until crisp.  Remove to a plate.  In the bacon drippings, sauce onion, celery, and garlic until translucent.)  Put potatoes in the pot along with the ham, if using.  Slowly pour in the chicken stock, scraping up any bits from the bottom of the pan.  Add in salt and pepper, rosemary sprig, nutmeg, and parsley.  Bring to a simmer.  Simmer until heated through, at least 15 minutes.  At the end, remove the rosemary and pour in the cream or milk.  Allow to simmer a few more minutes.  Serve in bowls topped with cheese, bacon, green onion, and/or sour cream.  

recipe by Katie @ www.gourmommy.com