Here is a hearty, stick to your ribs potato, bacon and kale soup for a cold winter day. Now, this is not a healthy soup recipe, although the kale does help redeem it a bit — but I find it a very comforting way to wait out the weather.
To adjust for vegetarian omit the bacon, swap out the chicken stock for vegetable stock and add a bit of smoked paprika to up the flavour.
Loaded Bacon, Potato and Kale Chowder(serves 2-4)
Place the bacon in your soup pot and turn the heat on to medium. Cook, stirring occasionally until it is nicely crisped. Remove to a paper towel to drain while you cook the vegetables. Add the onion, carrot and celery to the pot and reduce heat to medium low. Cook, stirring until the onions are soft. Add the garlic and cook another few minutes or until fragrant.
Add the potatoes, chicken stock and rosemary sprig and bring to a simmer. Add a pinch of salt and a grinding of pepper at this point, if you are using very salty bacon and bought stock only add a pinch of salt however if you have not very salty bacon and homemade stock add at least a half of a teaspoon as you want the potatoes to be seasoned as they cook. Return the bacon to the mixture and simmer for 30 minutes or until the potatoes or nice and soft. Blend half the mixture with an immersion blender if you have one or by carefully transferring to a blender.
Stir in the kale, green onions, and fresh parsley and cook for 10 minutes. This is a great opportunity to check and correct your seasoning with more salt and pepper. Remove the rosemary sprig.
Serve hot with grated parmesan on top and hearty bread on the side