So, I’ve recently adopted a low-carb diet (per doctor’s orders so don’t start harping on me about how unhealthy Adkins is because I ain’t doin’ Adkins and it wasn’t my idea in the first place). Needless to say I’ve eaten a lot of meat, cheese, eggs, and fruit the last several weeks. I am happy to report that I’ve actually lost about 10 pounds in the month since I’ve started so it isn’t all bad.
Anyway, I was starting to get really tired of chicken breasts and hamburger meat so I wanted to try to mix things up a little bit this week. At the grocery store, I saw a small ham and decided I could eat that for several days and not get tired of it and it would give me some variety that has been sadly lacking from my daily meals. I adore ham. I mean ADORE it. I could eat it every week and not get tired of it but who bakes a ham just for the heck of it? First off, they’re not cheap and you have to have several hours to bake it. And it makes a lot of food and you have to carve it. Not a typical middle of the work week kind of food is what I’m saying. Well, last night, I didn’t care. I had been craving that ham since we bought it a couple days ago and I decided to cook it. It was small enough (only a smidgen over 5.5 lbs) that I could bake it in 2 hours. This wasn’t a salt-cured/country ham, one of those hams in a can (ick) or a pre-made honey-baked thingy. I prepared a delicious bone-in picnic ham. It was actually the first time I had baked a ham and I am proud to say it turned out marvelous!
I decided I needed something to eat with the ham because a giant plate of meat is not a very well-rounded meal. My family always eats macaroni and cheese when we have ham. I don’t exactly know why but for some reason cheesey things go really well with ham. Of course, my low-carb diet doesn’t enable me to eat a lot of mac and cheese so that wasn’t an option. Then I started thinking about this yummy potato cheese soup I make but potato soup isn’t low carb either. Then I had the brilliant idea to convert my potato cheese soup recipe into a beer cheese soup recipe and leave out the potatoes.
I had never made beer cheese soup before but I thought it would be perfect with ham so I gave it a whirl. I checked on the internet for recipes and found several and decided to wing it and sort of do my own thing by converting my existing recipe. It turned out wonderful! Here is the recipe I used:
- 3/4 stick butter
- 1 medium onion cut in quarters
- 2 cans chicken broth
- 3 tbsp corn starch
- 1 jar cheese whiz
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 bottle of Heineken or other pale beer
Melt butter in bottom of stew pot. Throw in onion and saute’ for a few minutes. Add chicken broth and corn starch and whisk until well blended. Bring to a boil. Whisk in cheese whiz, milk and beer. Mix thoroughly. Cook about 20 minute on medium to medium/low. With a slotted spoon, fish out the onion pieces and discard. Enjoy!
This soup has a mild beer taste and it’s more twangy that “beery”. You can add more beer if you want but your soup won’t have as thick or creamy a consistency. I know Cheese Whiz isn’t exactly gourmet but this is a busy working woman kind of recipe. You can make it fancier by adding shredded colby or cheddar cheese but I read a lot of reviews that it made it have a lumpy consistency so I’d stick with Velveeta or cheeze whiz. I like the cheese whizy tang it gives with the beer so I’m sticking with what I like. In my batch, I finely diced the onions and left them in the soup but I didn’t care for the little onion bits so next time I’ll leave the pieces real big and take them out before serving. You can top with croutons, bacon pieces and a little shredded cheese or even serve with toasty bread but that wasn’t in line with my low-carb meal so I had mine with a big plate of ham. Not too bad a dinner for a Thursday night, huh?