So this is the recipe I followed with my slight changes.
6 strips Bacon
1 lb Lean Ground Beef
1 Large Onion
1 cup Carrots diced
1 cup Celery diced
3-4 slices of jarred Jalapenos (more if you like it spicy)
½ tbsp Cayenne Pepper
1 L Beef Stock
1 can of low fat evaporated milk
1/4 cup half and half
4 tbsp All Purpose Flour
LOTS Old Cheddar
Salt and Pepper to taste
*Optional: Sour Cream
1. Almost every soup begins with the aromatic Holy Grail: onions, celery and carrots. When these are cooked down, they take a kind back seat to enhance the rest of the flavors (whatever they may be) and allow them to be the star of the show. So we need to dice these things up first. Go ahead and cut up your jalapeno, as well.
2. Cut your bacon into one inch pieces and fry them until crispy in the bottom of a large pot or Dutch oven. Once crispy, remove them from the pot with a slotted spoon.
3. Into the remaining bacon fat toss in your ground beef. Break it up with a wooden spoon and keep stirring it. You’ll notice the ground beef will remove everything that was stuck to the bottom of the pan. This is a good thing; it’s soaked up all of that gorgeous bacon flavor.
4. Once the ground beef has been browned, toss in your aromatic trio – the carrots, celery and onions. Let these sweat until they’ve softened up and the onions are completely translucent. Add your bacon (reserve some for serving), jalapenos, cayenne pepper and season with salt and pepper.
5. Toss in all of your beef stock. If you think there is not enough liquid, you can always add some hot water. It should be sufficiently soupy. I know that’s vague, but how else do you describe it? Let this simmer for at least 20 minutes. The longer, the better.
6. When you feel all the flavors have melded together as they should, toss in your cream and stir. Next, in a separate container (preferably something with a tight fitting lid) put your flour and about twice as much water. Mix or shake this up vigorously to create an even mixture, then pour this into the soup to thicken it up. If you just put flour directly into the soup, the flour will clump up and the soup will not look very appetizing, with white flour chunks floating everywhere. I learned this the hard way a few years ago.
7. Bring everything back to a boil until the soup is sufficiently thickened. You can always add more cream if you like it creamier, more flour (pre-mixed in water, of course) if you like it thicker, or more water/beef stock if you like it thinner.
8. CHEESE! Shred it, and add it. All of it. I used that whole block pictured with the rest of the ingredients. There is never too much cheese in this recipe. I recommend taking it off the heat, and adding the cheese at the last moment. The soup should be sufficiently hot to melt the cheese readily, but not boiling. That leads to some wacky textures.
9. Plate it, top it with a dollop of sour cream. Don’t forget those bacon pieces that we saved right from the beginning ; throw those on top as well – way better than crackers!
Photo courtesy Republic of Bacon.com
OMG it was awesome.....to Die for! Well I thought so anyway! Have you ever made a recipe like this??? Of have a different but similar recipe please share! I love experimenting! Can't wait for left overs tonight!