We had a nice little cold snap this week, which always leaves me wanting something warm and hearty to eat for dinner. But not every day can be a “giant roast cooking all day long, Sunday dinner ” kind of day – so soups and stews are a go-to for me, since they give you that stick-to-your-ribs kind of cold weather meal feeling, and can be super fast too!
As for this one – it has beer, and cheese, and bacon. And it is spicy. Why say more?
What You Need:
1/8-1/4 cup (or more) diced pickled jalapeno
1 can chicken broth (I like low sodium)
1/2 can beer (you could use more, OR you could drink it.)
2 cups shredded cheese
1 tbls. flour
1 tbls .vegetable oil
several dashes of Worcestershire sauce
1 cup milk (give or take)
3/4 teaspoon yellow mustard
2 (or more – maybe many, many more) crumbled slices of cooked bacon
What You Do:
In a large sauce pan or stock pan, heat the oil over medium high heat, stir in the flour, and allow to cook a couple minutes stirring frequently to cook out that “flour-y taste.” (you are making a roux, like in this post,)
Next, add the chicken stock and then the beer slowly, a little at a time, whisking briskly to distribute the roux each time you add liquid. Try different Beers – a dark stout makes for a different taste than an ale, but both are way tasty.
When the flour mixture is completely incorporated and liquid is boiling, stir in jalapeno and bacon.
Remove from heat. Whisk in cheese and stir until smooth. (Again, try different cheeses… think about what might complement the beer you are using – the combos are endless, I like strong cheeses with dark beers, and mild cheeses with lighter beer – so neither flavor overwhelms the other.)
Add Mustard and a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce (some like the flavor more than others, I a like a generous amount, personally.)
Now slowly add milk and stir to reach the consistency you like best for this kind of soup – it is personal, so add as much or as little as needed.
– Lay out a toppings bar so all can enjoy personalizing their bowls – sour cream, extra bacon bits, horseradish, jalapeno slices, fresh diced onion…. whatever sounds good. Serve with crusty bread or pretzel rolls for sopping up the end of the soup.