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Potato Soup with Bacon and Jalapenos

Ingredients

  • 2 jalapenos, roasted, seeded and diced
  • 6 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1/2 an onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4-6 cups chicken broth
  • 2 pounds potatoes, cut into 1" chunks
  • pinch of ground cumin
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • sour cream optional
  • grated Jack or Cheddar cheese optional
  • green onions, sliced optional

Instructions

  • Put the jalapenos under the broiler for about 5 minutes per side, then let cool, split them lengthwise and scrape out the seeds, then dice.
  • Saute the bacon in your soup pot until crispy, stirring over medium heat. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon onto a paper towel. Pour off all but 1 Tablespoon of the grease.
  • Saute the celery and onion over low heat until soft, stirring periodically (8-10 minutes). Stir in the chopped garlic and cook a minute, then add 4 cups of broth, potatoes, cumin and cayenne. Turn the heat up and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook about 30 minutes, uncovered, until the potatoes are tender, stirring now and then.
  • If you're using an immersion blender, blend the soup in the pot. If you're using a blender or food processor, let the soup cool ten minutes or so before blending and do it in batches.
  • Return the soup to low heat and stir in the bacon, jalapenos, cilantro, buttermilk and half and half. Add more broth, water, buttermilk or half and half if you want a thinner soup. Heat the soup over low heat for about 10 minutes, then add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve with sour cream, grated cheese and green onions.