1. Melt butter in a large saucepan. Add onions and ham, saute until soft. Sprinkle with flour and cook, stirring 2 minutes or until flour begins to brown. Add potatoes, chicken stock, thyme and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender, 15-20 minutes.
2. When potatoes are tender, mash with a potato masher or sturdy whisk until the soup is creamy but not a puree. Stir in cream and cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Recipe courtesy of Mike Arnold, Eighth and Roast