Fennel-Bacon Soup

 

photoThe other night our great friend Megan Ketch took Carter and I out to dinner.  It was such a treat and we shared a fennel and bacon soup.  I have no idea what they put in theirs beyond the titled ingredients, but I made up one of my own without any diary.  It easily can become a vegan recipe by using olive oil in place of the bacon.  But unless you have a religious reason have the bacon, it is such a small amount, but it really makes it.

 

4 slices of bacon

1 medium sweet onion chopped

3 bulbs of fennel- cut thinly

2 carrots- peeled and chopped

2 stalks of celery- chopped

3 cans of chicken stock

2 small Yukon gold potatoes- peeled and chopped

7 cloves of garlic minced

2 bay leaves

1 T. fennel seeds

2 t. thyme

2 t. salt

Pepper

1 t. sugar

 

Cut the bacon into lardoons, by stacking up all the slices and cutting them into half inch pieces.  Place all the raw bacon in a soup pot and cook on medium high heat until brown and crispy.  Make sure you are stirring it towards the end.  Remove the crispy bacon from the pot and set aside, leaving the fat in the bottom of the pan.

 

Turn heat back up to high and add the onions, carrots, celery and fennel.  Cook for about 5 minutes stirring often.  Add half the salt, fennel seeds, thyme and the garlic and continue cooking another 5 minutes.  Add the chicken stock, potato and the Bay leaves.  Cover the pot and bring to a boil then reduce to simmer and cook for 30 minutes.  Remove from heat.

 

Using an immersion blender puree the soup.  Add the sugar and a bunch of black pepper.  Taste for salt, it will need more.

 

Serve and sprinkle a spoonful of the bacon on top.



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