A tasty and hearty soup based from the book, "Stone Soup".
Place the olive oil in a 6 quart or larger dutch oven and heat the oil over medium heat until hot.
While the oil heats, peel and dice one large shallot and add to the hot oil in the pot. Saute the shallot until translucent and then add in the minced garlic.
Saute the minced garlic until just golden but not brown. Be sure to stir the shallot and minced garlic continually while cooking so as not to burn them.
Once the shallot and garlic is sauted, pour in four cups of water or chicken broth.
Wash, peel, and chop, carrots and potatoes and then wash and dice the celery. Add them into the pot.
Add in all other seasonings to taste, along with the chicken bullion cubes if you used water.
Give all of the ingredients a good stir (don't add the milk or heavy cream yet!) and place the lid on the dutch oven.
Allow the soup to cook and boil on medium high heat for around 20 minutes or until the veggies are fork tender.
Once the veggies are tender, remove from the heat and use a potato masher to mash the veggies into small pieces. Pour in the evaporated milk or heavy whipping cream and stir well.
Taste to ensure that the seasonings are to your liking and add more if needed. Serve hot and enjoy!
This soup pairs well with a hot sandwich (Tuna melt, Ham and Swiss, Grilled Cheese) or a thick slice of toasted and buttered sourdough bread.