Because of my busy work schedule, I usually don’t have time to watch much television, and when I do, it’s usually one of the few food programs I like to follow. One of them is Guy Fieri’s DDD, which is not only entertaining but full of delicious recipes and inspiration.
One day I happened to be watching when he visited Grover’s Diner in East Amherst, NY, and they were discussing the most popular item on the menu…bet you can’t guess what it is…well, it’s cheeseburger soup! I’m sure that you are probably thinking that this must be one of those gimmicky recipes that can’t be all that good. Well, that’s what I said until I tried it!
After watching the program, I was really curious and thought about that soup for 3 days before deciding that I was going to make it. My rationale? Well, for starters, why shouldn’t it be good…creamy, cheesy soup packed with nuggets of cooked ground beef…what’s not to like?
I must say that I was worried about the addition of the lettuce and tomato, but after having it I can tell you that this is what actually made the soup taste like a cheeseburger.
The only thing I did differently was that I made a roux as the thickening agent and then added the cheese. Grover’s melts velveeta directly into their broth, but I refuse to use it since I don’t consider that real cheese. Feel free to use it if you prefer, but you may have to experiment with the quantity. So, with all of this cold weather, I wanted to share this recipe with you and maybe you will be curious enough to try it! Ladies and gentleman, I give you cheeseburger soup….
**Recipe modified from Grover’s Diner, Easy Amherst, NY
Cheeseburger Soup (serves 4-6 people)
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons flour
2 cups milk, warm
4-6 cups shredded cheddar cheese (for soup) (Grover’s uses velveeta)
16 oz of beef or chicken stock (I used beef, Grover’s uses chicken)
1 # very lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
S&P to taste
4 small tomatoes
½ small head iceberg lettuce, finely shredded
1 cup shredded cheddar (for top of soup)
First, chop your onion and add it to a skillet with the 1 Tablespoon of olive oil. Cook for a few minutes until the onion begins to caramelize then add the ground beef. Add some S&P and cook completely until the meat is no longer pink, then set aside. Take a small stock pot and add the butter and flour and cook for a few minutes to create a paste. Slowly add in the warm milk and whisk until it begins to thicken, then slowly add the stock until it is all incorporated. Add a little S&P and then begin to add the shredded cheddar a little at a time until you get the consistency you want. I kept it to about 4 cups, but you may prefer to have yours a little creamier. At this point, taste again for S&P, then add the cooked ground beef and stir until it is well incorporated. Serve into soup bowls and top with lettuce, tomato and some more shredded cheese.