Cream of Parsnip Soup with Potato Crisps and Bacon
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups chopped onions
- 1 cup chopped celery
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- 10 cups chicken stock
- 3 pounds parsnips, peeled and diced
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 6 ounces raw bacon, chopped
- 1/2 pound new potatoes, thinly sliced and soaking in cold water
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Melt the butter in a 6-quart stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and celery. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until the vegetables are soft, about 4 minutes. Add the bay leaf and garlic.
Add the stock and parsnips and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, until the parsnips are very soft, about 1 hour. Remove soup from heat and allow to cool a little. Discard bay leaf.
Using a hand-held blender, carefully puree soup until smooth. Stir in cream. Season with salt and pepper.
In a small saute pan, over medium heat, render bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon and drain on paper towels. Fry the potatoes in bacon fat until crispy and brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer potatoes to paper towel lined plate when done. Season with salt.
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