I wish I could get in on the squash lovefest that’s happening right now but for whatever reason, squash is one of things that’s just “meh” to me. I mean if it’s on the plate I’ll eat it but I won’t jump out of my seat about it. This is a rather frustrating concept to me because I really want to like it. Honestly, I do. I hear everyone gushing about his or her latest squashy creations and it seems to be all over restaurant menus. Take for example butternut squash soup. It sounds great when I think about it and it even still sounds great as I order it and it’s being placed in front of me. But it never fails. No matter how talented the chef or how fantastic the recipe; I just don’t really like squash.
So I made the anti-squash soup and called upon squash’s cousin, the sweet potato to help me out. I started by pureeing three sweet potatoes with an apple and then added a whole mess of classic fall flavors; cinnamon, nutmeg, maple syrup, sage and rosemary. You know, the usual suspects. Oh, and then I threw in BACON. That’s right, sweet, sweet bacon to balance all the sweetness with some smoky salt flavor. (I don’t know why bacon to me sort of deserves a fanfare whenever I mention it. I sometimes feel the need to put it all caps.) And then to finish it all up, I added (of course) cheese. That’s right, glorious, melty cheese that sort of swam on top of the soup. I had planned to top this off even further by some toasted hazelnuts but I guess I didn’t have any hanging around my Small Boston Kitchen like I thought. Don’t you just hate when that happens?
Bacon and Sweet Potato Soup with Sage
|Apples, Bacon, Cinnamon , Maple Syrup, Sweet Potato
- 3 large sweet potatoes
- 1 medium-sized apple, peeled and cored
- 1 1/2 boxes of chicken stock
- 6 slices of bacon
- 2 tbs maple syrup
- 1 tbs of cinnamon
- A couple generous pinches of nutmeg
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
- A couple leaves of fresh sage, chopped
- A sprinkling of gruyere cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
|I start by baking the sweet potatoes in the oven at 400 until they just cooked through. Then I let them cool.
|While the potatoes were cooling, I fried up some bacon into the soup pot and once it got crispy, I took it out and placed it on top of paper towels.
|Next I blotted out about half of the bacon grease with a paper towel and left the rest in the pot to use for the soup.
|Once the potatoes were cooled, they were peeled and cut into large chunks and thrown into the pot with the bacon fat. The apple pieces were added as well as one box of chicken stock.
|Using an immersion blender, I pureed the sweet potatoes and the apple until velvety smooth and consistent in texture.
|I gradually blended in the remaining half carton of stock and then added the maple syrup, rosemary (I just through the whole sprig in and then fished it out later) cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
|Stir with a spoon, cover and let everything sit. Let this simmer for as long as you'd like (remember the flavor intensifies as it sits. I'd at least let this go for 30 minutes).
|Give it a quick stir and then adjust the seasonings to your liking.
|To serve, start by ladling the soup into a bowl.
|Add the cheese and top with one piece of bacon that's crumbled up.
|Finish with some fresh sage and toasted hazelnuts (unless you're like me and didn't have them on hand!)