“Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand - and melting like a snowflake.”
- Francis Bacon

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bacon Laced Cream of Celery Soup + Rethink the lowly holiday nut cracker

Celery soup isn't too complicated. And celery itself isn't all that flavorful. I wanted my soup to have a little more weight while still retaining a nice celery taste that's where the bacon comes in. Besides, I bacon

I know we all do it - buy celery for this reason or that and then those poor, left-over stalks sit in the fridge until they are all limp and slimy. About that time they make it into the trash for a proper burial. This recipe will give our neglected celery something to do and keep us from hitting ourselves over the head for wasting food - yet again.

I cooked the bacon in our soup pot, leaving the fat behind to sauté our celery and onion. Then I crumbled the cooked bacon on top at the end. It adds a nice, salty depth of flavor that I love, but of course if you are a vegetarian or just want a simpler soup, you could leave it out.

4 strips bacon
1 tablespoon butter
5 cups (loosely packed) chopped celery, stalks and tops
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
1 medium baking potato, peeled and cubed
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
2 cups whole milk
salt and pepper

Lay the bacon in the bottom of a large stock pot or dutch oven. Cook over low heat for about 15 or 20 minutes, until crisp (cooking time will depend on how thick your bacon is). Remove and set aside on paper towels.

Add butter to the pot, increase the heat slightly, and add celery, onion, garlic, and thyme. Season well with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes.

Add the potato, stock, and milk to the pot and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep the milk from forming a film, until potato is very soft.

Purée the soup with food processor or blender. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with cooked bacon crumbled on top. YUM!

I found this little hint and thought - Why in the world didn't I think of that! I can't tell you how many times I've grabbed glue and couldn't get the cap off. I don't consider myself a wimp but there are times when I need a little help with opening and twisting! The dogs and cats don't have opposable thumbs so I am pretty much on my own  But, lookie-lookie, grab your nut cracker and you are off to the races gluing and smiling


Shopgirl said...

Mimi, It is so good to know that we are doing this at the same time. Yesterday was hard for some reason, but I managed to be a good girl and get through it. You make such lovely food, that must make it so hard too. I like the nights that Arney works late because I am not cooking the dinner meal.
You are so right, busy is the best thing I can do....if I find myself going in circles looking for salt and sugar it is because I have let myself get bored or idol.
I look at this and wonder how I let this happen....but that is my poor me time.
Thank you so much Mimi, we can do this, we can!!!!
Love, Mary

Marilyn said...

Sounds wonderful as I love celery soup & BACON!! Who doesn't love bacon?? It is the "candy" of the meat class!! LOL!!

Protege said...

I am at work and I just had a soup in a cup, but this one here looks (and tastes, I am sure!) so much better than mine.;)
Thank you for the idea about opening lids and caps, I will remember this.;)

The Lucy and Dick Show said...

I always keep tools around for Dick.... He always takes the lids off stuff and twists them until they're so bent up!

Mandy said...

Oh yum! I need to try this. My boyfriend and I love bacon too and I love making soups as they are so easy to do. Thank you!

^..^Corgidogmama said...

Since the new year began, I've bought a bunch of celery each week. Now...I have something interesting to make with it, rather than the ordinary, plain jane attempts at rabbit food. I'm making this...only with 1% milk.
But, I'm eating IT ALL!!!!

Midwest Mom said...

I've never thought of adding bacon to my celery soup... Brilliant!

Our recipe uses potatoes and celery root instead of regular ribs of celery. Once they're cooked and pureed, they're so creamy and delicious -- like eating a bowl of life itself.

(Makes me happy just to think about it. Thanks!)

Annesphamily said...

Hi Mimi! I love your blog and the wonderful recipes. With more cold weather in our weekend you are inspiring me to cook,cook,cook! :) Happy Pink Saturday and weekend to you!