Bacon, Pumpkin, Ginger Soup
Time: 45 minutes
Chopped pumpkin (1 container or about 3 cups of chunks)
1-2 packs of bacon, or roughly 1 pound. 8-12 slices should do it
½ stalk of ginger, chopped coarsely in the food processor*
1 pint heavy whipping cream or about ½ L ( may be halved and replaced with water for the other half, depending on taste and thickness preference)
Cook the bacon in a frying pan (nonstick works best) until crispy but not burnt. Then, dry the strips with paper towels and crumble into bits.
Place a big pot on the stove over medium heat with oil (canola or sunflower is best) to fully coat the bottom.
Note: for this recipe, butter will not work!
Add 1 cup of water to the pot (this helps ensure the pumpkin won’t stick to the bottom and ruin your pan!)
Add the pumpkin and ginger and bring to a slow boil.
Turn the heat down to medium-low and keep cooking for about 20 minutes, or until the pumpkin softens significantly.
*Note: the ginger will NOT soften much. If you do not want ANY crunch or textural variation in your soup, use 2-3 T powdered ginger instead of fresh.
Add the bacon and cook for another 2 minutes.
Turn the heat off, and add the whipping cream.
Now, take out that trusty immersion blender and puree the pumpkin chunks in the liquid mixture until everything is smooth.
Note: The bacon and ginger will pulverize, too, but may not get completely smooth. If you want the consistency to be uniform, pulse the bacon and ginger in the food processor first before adding to the pumpkin mixture and/or see note above*.
Turn the heat back on to low and simmer for another 5 minutes or so until the flavors meld, stirring often.
This soup can be served immediately, but it can also be frozen and stored.
Please note that if you decide to freeze it, it will thicken. When you want to eat it, add a cup of water when you heat it up on the stove and whisk thoroughly.
*Note: This soup takes terrible pictures...it is what the Italians call "brutto ma buono" (ugly but good). It tastes WAY better than it looks, trust me!