This is just perfect for fall. Courtesy of Food and Wine Magazine.
1/2 pound bacon, sliced 1/3 inch thick and cut into 1/3 inch dice
1 celery rib, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 large jalapeno, seeded and chopped
2 large garlic gloves, minced
1 tablespoon chopped thyme
1 (12 ounce) bottle of beer
2 1/4 cups vegetable broth
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 pound good quality sharp yellow cheese, shredded
4 ounces smoked cheddar cheese, shredded
Fresh ground pepper
- In a large saucepan, cook the bacon over moderate heat until the fat is rendered and the bacon is crisp, 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a bowl. Add the celery, onion, jalapeño, garlic and thyme to the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, 8 minutes. Add half of the beer and cook until reduced by half, 5 minutes. Add 2 1/4 cups of broth and bring to a simmer.
- In a small skillet, melt the butter. Add the flour and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Whisk this roux into the soup until incorporated and bring to a simmer. Cook until thickened, about 8 minutes. Add the heavy cream, cheddar cheeses and the remaining beer and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thick and creamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the bacon and season with pepper. Add a few tablespoons of broth if the soup is too thick.
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