Italian Bread Bowl Potato Soup

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Italian Bread Bowl Potato Soup

Post  justmecookin on Sat Jan 01, 2011 11:46 am

Italian Bread Bowl Potato Soup

6 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (2 1/2 pounds)
2 medium onions, diced
2 carrots, thinly sliced
2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans chicken broth
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
Italian Bread Bowls
Garnish: fresh celery leaves

Combine first 8 ingredients in a 4 1/2-quart slow cooker. Cook, covered, at HIGH 3 hours or until vegetables are tender. Stir together flour and half-and-half; stir into soup. Cover and cook 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Serve in Italian Bread Bowls, and garnish, if desired. Makes 8 cups

Italian Bread Bowls
2 1/2 cups warm water (105 to 115)
2 (1/4-ounce) envelopes active dry yeast
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
7 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cornmeal
1 egg white
1 tablespoon water

Stir together 2 1/2 cups water and yeast in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in salt and oil. Add flour gradually, beating at medium speed with an electric mixer until a soft dough forms.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic (4 to 6 minutes). Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85), free from drafts, 35 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

Punch dough down, and divide into 8 equal portions. Shape each portion into a 4-inch round loaf. Place loaves on lightly greased baking sheets sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85), free from drafts, 35 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

Stir together egg white and 1 tablespoon water; brush over loaves. Bake at 400 for 15 minutes. Brush with remaining egg mixture, and bake 10 to 15 more minutes or until golden. Cool on wire racks. Freeze up to 1 month, if desired.

Cut a 1/2-inch-thick slice from top of each loaf; scoop out centers, leaving 3/4-inch-thick shells. (Reserve centers for other uses.) Fill bread bowls with hot soup, and serve immediately. Makes 8 servings

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