I am uncomfortably full right now because lunch was extremely tasty. Everyone loved it and ate at least two bowls, including Tarzan, who generally thinks my food is weird. :) It makes a ton- a whole big pot full, and it's all gone. YUM.
1 lb ground beef
2 or 3 big carrots, grated
2 or 3 stalks celery, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper (the whole thing never makes it into the soup. I try to chop fast but the beggars usually steal at least half the pepper from the cutting board)
1 bag frozen hash browns (i think they're 2 lbs?)
32 oz chicken broth
4 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour (I used a sorghum and rice baking mix)
1 1/2 cups milk
2 cups shredded cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
Brown the beef in a skillet. Then in a big soup pot put 1 T of the butter and saute the veggies until they're soft. Add the meat and hash browns, stir, and add broth. Heat through and cook for about 10-15 minutes.
Melt the remaining butter in the microwave, stir in the flour and milk, and add mixture to soup to thicken. Add cheese, stir till melted, and add sour cream just before serving.
This is more like chowder, or what Rachael Ray calls "stoup". It's really hearty and thick, but the spoon doesn't stand up by itself. :) I like to eat it with potato chips and treat it like it was dip. But then, I'm sometimes very strange. I like the extra crunch and salt though- maybe crush them and put them on top? I guess since I can't have crackers, I tend to lean toward chips with soup.