5 cups chicken broth or water
6 cups diced russet potatoes, in 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup finely diced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
2 Tbsp cornstarch + 3 Tbsp water (optional)
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/4 cup heavy cream or half and half
1/2 cup sour cream
3 Tbsp chopped chives or scallions
1/2 cup crumbled crisp bacon
Put the broth or water, potatoes, onions, garlic, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, if using, in the Instant Pot.
Close the lid and make sure the valve is set to Sealing. Push the Pressure Cook (or Manual) button and adjust time using the + and - buttons to get to 6 minutes. When it beeps that it's done, flip the valve from Sealing to Venting for a quick release and when the pin drops after a minute or so, remove the lid and hit Cancel.
If you want a smooth soup, puree it now with an immersion blender, regular blender or food processor. If you like it chunky, leave it as is or mash some of it with a potato masher and leave some potato lumps.
Stir together the cornstarch and water until smooth. Press the Saute button and bring the soup to the boil. Add some of the cornstarch slurry and bring to a boil. Add more if you want it thicker, whisking constantly. Press Cancel.
Set aside a couple of tablespoons of grated cheese for garnish and when the soup stops boiling, add the cheese and stir until melted.
Whisk in the cream and the sour cream. Save about one tablespoon of chives and the same amount of bacon for garnish and add the rest to the soup. Taste and add salt and pepper if desired. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkling of cheese, chives and bacon. Yum.