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fast, slow, and soup.
If you’ve been following me for any amount of time, you may have noticed that I am a frequent frequenter of fast food restaurants. This newsletter is about soup, but I’ll look for any opportunity to write about Taco Bell.
In my last job, I felt very out of place. Nobody expressed any interest in training me and I was largely ignored which meant I spent a lot of time in my car. I never wanted to eat at work, or be seen on a break, so I would go to a fast food joint and have lunch in my car. After two weeks, I was addicted to fast food. Every time I got into my car to go to work, I immediately thought about which drive-thru would be on my route. The cravings have only waned slightly in the last few years and I can still be found in one or another drive-thru a few times per month. These are my go to fast food orders ranked by favorite and frequency:
1 Chicken Quesadilla
2 Soft Tacos
Dorito Loco Taco
Cheesy Gordita Crunch (with a Dorito taco)
Chicken Chipotle Ranch Wrap
Cheesy Roll Up
Secret to success - when I get to the second window at the Taco Bell drive-thru, I tip the attendant five dollars and ask them for extra Fire Sauce. It works every time.
6p Chicken Nugget (ranch)
2 Sausage Burritos w/ hot sauce
Or 1 Sausage McMuffin
I’ve been getting the same standard order at McDonald’s since I was in middle school. When I was a teenager, we would disassemble the McDouble and put the entire McChicken in between the two burger patties to create a new item called The McGangbang. I’m still eating the McGangbang today but I keep it within their own respective buns.
1 Classic Roast Beef
1 Roast Beef & Cheddar
Small Curly Fries
Extra Horsey & Extra Arby Sauce
I think that Arby’s has the best cheese sticks going.
1 Classic Chicken Sandwich (just the sandwich)
1 Small Sprite
Cheeseburger Soup is hilarious to me and sometimes I wish I could give it a different name because it is valid and worthy and delicious but it sounds absurd. The first time I made this soup for the public, it had pickles in it and Jeff Daniels ate it. He was in town starring in a play and he asked if it should be eaten hot or cold. It’s been somewhat of a point of pride in my journey. I have since removed the pickles and made it more my own.
2 lb. 80/20 ground beef
1 small onion (diced)
1 bunch scallions (bulbs and stems separated)
2 tbsp. onions powder
2 tbsp. garlic powder
1 tsbp. paprika
2 tsbp. butter
4 tsbp. all-purpose flour
2 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, cut into spoon sized pieces
4 – 6 cups chicken stock
2 cups heavy cream
16oz. brick of Velveeta (cubed)
Shredded cheddar for garnish
Begin by browning the ground beef in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the spice mixture as well as salt and stir to combine, then add the onions and white parts of the scallion. When the onions become tender, add butter and stir to combine, scraping the bottom of the pot. When the butter has melted, add flour and stir until all of the flour is absorbed. Add potatoes and chicken stock. Bring the soup to a boil and allow it to thicken. Turn the heat down and place the lid on for 10 – 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Add cream and Velveeta and continue to simmer on low until the cheese is completely melted. Finish with the scallion greens. Salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with shredded cheddar, and diced chives.
Everyone likes this soup. The elements are universal and undeniable and when brought together, irresistible. Get into it.
My favorite cheeseburgers in Pittsburgh are at Tessaro’s, Butterjoint, and the Squirrel Cage. I’m not really interested in any other cheeseburgers.
Thank you for reading and supporting. Ten days until 1989 (TV).
I love you