Monday, June 20, 2011

Bacon Fixes Everything

Let me be honest. I was not particularly pleased with the london broil I concocted the other night. For some reason it came out tougher than I was hoping for, and the gravy lacked a flavor I can't put my tongue on.

So I moved on, saddened, but ready for a new challenge: cooking without oil of any kind (and not because I want to be healthier...). In my previous post I gave notice of my plans to make a red bell pepper and potato soup...and usually I flavor soup broth with a little olive oil...but since I am out of olive oil I had to come up with a new plan.

I thought 'bacon.' And then?

Then I created a Kickin' Potato Red Pepper and Bacon Soup!

It turned out just the way my taste buds were hoping! Spicy and sweet.

Ingredients

1 yellow onion
1 can roasted bell peppers or 3 large fresh bell peppers roasted at home, chopped
3 russet potatoes, chopped
2 cans chicken or veggie broth (or bouillon cubes w/ water)
2 cups water
8 pieces of bacon, cooked and chopped (save fat)
1/4 cup bacon fat
1 teaspoon cayan pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1 bay leaf
2-3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
pepper and salt to taste (I recommend no added salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper)

Directions

Start by heating broth and water mixed with seasonings (cayan, pepper, salt, garlic, bay leaf, paprika). Add chopped raw onions, chopped raw potatoes, chopped bell peppers. Bring to boil and simmer.

Cook bacon, cool. Chop bacon, then add bacon and 1/2 cup bacon fat to the soup pot. Continue to simmer.

The soup took about 1hr 45mins before I decided it was done. This gave all the flavors a nice chunk of time to seep into one another. If you're not a fan of spicy flavors, forego the cayan pepper and add a little less paprika and black pepper.

Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 1hr 45mins
Total time: 2hrs 10mins

Now I'm wondering what bacon/bacon fat would be like in a tomato sauce...but that might be too crazy. I guess the pancetta will do. Stay tuned for my next kitchen adventure!

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