Anyone who has eaten the cheese soup at the old Lazarus restaurants (now Macy's) knows first hand how truly delicious this soup is. Usually it was served on Fridays and the trick for those of us who worked there was to get our order in before it sold out!!!
The first time I made it did not turn out as I had hoped it would so I consulted Mike the manager at the time. He told me the secret. To achieve the silky consistency and mellow cheddar flavor it was necessary to use a specific cheese, not indicated in the Lazarus cookbook sold at the deli. The secret ingredient is Kraft Sharpie Cheddar slices formerly known as Old English slices. This cheese is found in the larger groceries and it is next to the Kraft American singles but not the individually wrapped variety.
The second recipe is really tasty too and they are great together. They would be great to tailgate with. Thermos jars of piping hot soup in big mugs to sip on a crisp afternoon!! And since the sandwiches are heated individually in foil packets it is a breeze to pack them hot in a small inexpensive foam cooler. If the cooler is a bit large just pack the space with towels or newspaper to insulate further. I once packed baked potatoes like this and they were very hot for 2 days!!
1 1/2 C. diced carrots
1 1/2 C. diced celery
1 large onion diced
2 cans undiluted chicken broth ( or good homemade 2-2 1/2 C.)
2 sticks butter
1/4 C. flour
16 oz. (2, 8 oz. pkg.) Kraft Sharp Cheddar slices
6 C. milk
cooked crumbled bacon or fresh chopped parsley for garnish
Using a medium saucepan cook the carrots and celery in the chicken stock for about 8-10 minutes until tender crisp. Meanwhile in the bottom of a heavy bottomed larger kettle melt the butter and saute the
onions until they are just tender. Whisk the flour into the butter and cook as a rue. Add all at once the carrot/celery/broth mixture and keep stirring as you also add the milk. Bring to a boil and cook over medium heat until it thickens. Lower the heat and dice the cheese into the soup stirring until it is fully melted. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with optional garnish.
This recipe was adapted from the Lazarus cookbook.
Game Day Sandwiches
1 pound shaved deli ham
1/4 C. melted butter
2 T. Worcestershire Sauce
2 T. mustard
2 T. poppy seed
8 slices cheese
8 hamburger rolls
Chop the ham. I use a hand chopper as not to chop too much. You want a rough chop, not a mealy mixture. Using a small pan melt the butter over low heat then remove from the heat. Stir into the butter the Worcestershire, mustard, and poppy seed and mix well. Add this to the roughly chopped ham and stir well before the butter hardens. Spoon the meat mixture evenly onto the buns. I use my hand to push the mixture together and pat it into the buns. Top with your favorite cheese and the top bun. Wrap each sandwich in aluminum foil to form an airtight packet. At this point you can either store them in the refrigerator until you are ready to use them or bake at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes and serve hot.
This recipe is adapted from, "Once Upon A Time" by the Junior League of Evansville, In.