Potato and sweet potato soup with cheddar and an optional sneaky handful of smoked moose


Potato and sweet potato soup and Finnish potato flatbread

Another week of social distancing, or house arrest as husband calls it, is behind us.

We have been doing our allowed daily walks. Otherwise it has been a bit uneventful. One day we gave the house a proper clean. Husband is a very thorough cleaner, which is why normally I don't have time to clean with him but rather do it when he is out of the way. But since now we have limited engagements in the diary I thought let's do it together.

And he does take his time. After I suggested we get started, he took about 45 minutes to actually get started. There was some urgent WhatsApping to be done and he also had to have a cup of Ahmad Cardamom tea. This happens whenever we are about to do something. Like when we have decided to go out for our walk, I go put my coat on. He goes and puts the kettle on. Once I've zipped up my boots he emerges from the kitchen with a cuppa and sits down on the sofa while I impatiently huff and puff in the hallway which has no effect whatsoever on his leisurely slurping.

So we agreed he would hoover and I would do everything else. Which is fair, the everything else sounds more that it actually was, it was mainly just cleaning the bathroom, kitchen surfaces, dusting, mopping the floors and sorting out my own mess, like piles of clothes. When I clean the house myself it takes me about 2 hours. This time it took 3 hours for the two of us.

For some reason husband always wants to rearrange furniture while we're at it. So we moved things around although I knew from the start that the new order would not work and we'd have to move everything back but I don't want to curb his creativity. And also what else is there to do really.

"Creating things takes time, destroying is easy", he philosophised as we moved the living room furniture back to their original places.

Finnish potato flatbread, perunarieska

Finnish potato flatbread, perunarieska

One day I was busy on my laptop, it's actually quite hectic at work with this virus situation and the types of products that we manufacture. He came to the kitchen which is were I've set up my home office and asked if I was busy or if I could come to the front room for a bit. I followed him. He wanted to shoot a little film of us dancing to middle-eastern music. So we did. I can't dance to that music very well. Husband is really good, he does this funny shoulder shake, which I can't get my stiff Finnish shoulders to do. So after a little dance and a giggle I returned to my laptop.

I've been doing lots of nice cooking. I seem to have hoarded lots of potatoes. I assume when other people veered towards the pasta shelves I went for potato crates pulled by my Finnish genes. And also the veg box I managed to order the other week had a couple of bags of potatoes. I also have accumulated quite a few sweet potatoes.

So when I saw this amazing looking cheesy 3 potato soup recipe online, I wanted to try it. Original plan was to actually follow the recipe, but in the end I decided to modify a little. I only did two types or potatoes and added some carrot and moose. Moose is after all the potato of the forrest.

Otherwise I followed the original recipe pretty closely.

Potato and sweet potato soup and Finnish potato flatbread

I made a quick portion of mash and made my fantastic Finnish potato flatbreads. They really are nice. I already made them again with another version of a potato and moose soup. So easy. No kneading, no proofing!!

I shared the recipe with my dad, and they made them and really liked them as well. My mum used to make these, we had a proper wood fired oven in the house that I grew up in and on Saturdays mum would bake lots of bread, cinnamon buns, cakes and often a big bowl of barley porridge. And these flatbreads which we had hot from the oven with butter melting on them.

So here is my slightly modified version of this simple but yummy potato soup.

2 potato and carrot soup with optional sprinkling of cured meat

(serves 4)

Vegetable oil
Yellow onion
1-2 cloves or garlic
1/4 cup of flour
2 cups vegetable stock
2 cups milk, warmed
500 g potatoes and sweet potato
250 g carrot
Smoked moose meat (optional, or could be substituted with pancetta or similar)
1 cup cheddar cheese
Black pepper

Heat oil in a large pan, ideally non-stick.  Chop onion and sauté for a couple of  minutes. Mince the garlic and add in. Sauté for another minute of two. Sprinkle the flour on top and keep stirring for about a minute.  Then  pour in the stock, add the milk. Season with salt and pepper.

Chop potatoes, sweet potato and carrot into smallish cubes and add in. Bring to a simmer and keep cooking for about 15 minutes until the potatoes and carrots are soft. Keep stirring every few minutes so that it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan and burn. 

Once the vegetables are tender add in the grated cheddar and meat if using. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed.

Serve with warm homemade great and butter.

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