One of my big roadblocks in this life is figuring out what’s for dinner. “What’s for dinner?” makes me kind of cringe. I always think What, again? Already? Didn’t we just eat dinner yesterday? I don’t know, I’d rather just eat leftover Chinese takeout straight from the carton. I’m kinda lazy. So I was pretty happy when I came up with the most genius post-holiday dinner idea ever: Leftover Thanksgiving Dinner Mashed Potato Soup. It’s just all your leftover mashed potatoes, plus some broth, plus a couple chopped up leeks, plus a little bit of sour cream and the last of the milk before it goes bad, plus I fried up some bacon and crumbled that in, which is when it started to get really heavenly, and then I shredded about a cup of cheese and stirred that in, too. Salt and pepper. It was so good! I just ate it, thinking, That’s what I’m talking about. In case you want a real recipe, here’s mostly what I did:
Lazy Girl Leftover Thanksgiving Dinner Mashed Potato Soup
1/4 cup olive oil
2 leeks, chopped
2 or 3 cups (leftover Thanksgiving Day) mashed potatoes
2 cups (leftover Thanksgiving Day) chicken broth
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup (leftover Thanksgiving Day) sour cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Pinch dried tarragon, if you feel like it
6 strips bacon, fried crispy and crumbled
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Saute the leeks in the olive oil until they’re soft. Dump in the mashed potatoes, and add the broth. Add water if it needs more liquid. Stir it up good and bring it to a boil. Let it bubble for awhile, until everything is nice and hot, then turn the heat down to a simmer, and use an immersion blender to whip it all smooth. Stir in the milk, sour cream, salt, pepper, and tarragon. Crumble in the bacon and stir in the cheese. Easy, and delicious.
One night last week, I came home to find the girl and her BFF sitting around the table making needle-felted animals from little kits they’d bought, which honestly made my heart leap around with comfort and joy. The craftiness around here does not end with me. The next day they were casting about for something to do so I put them to work on pom poms, which are also easy. They happily made these, amid much giggling and narration. They made tea. They posed for goofy pictures.
Then Dean made a huge pan of cinnamon rolls from scratch, and we ate them and decorated the Christmas tree, listening to a lot of Nat King Cole on Pandora. Crafts. Soup. Friends. Cinnamon. Life is so good.