Bacon and Beer Cheddar Cheese Soup
1/2 lb bacon, cut into small squares
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 large jalapeno, seeded and chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbs thyme, chopped
1/4 C all-purpose flour
2¼ C low sodium chicken broth
4 Tbs butter
1 12oz bottle of Deschutes River Ale
1/2 lb Cheddar cheese, shredded
4 oz Smoked cheddar cheese, shredded
1 C heavy cream
Pinch of salt and pepper
1. In a large saucepan, cook the bacon over moderate heat until the fat has turned to liquid and the bacon is crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a bowl.
2. Add the celery, onion, jalapeno, garlic and thyme to the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened.
3. Add half of the bottle of Deschutes River Ale and cook until reduced by half.
4. Add 2¼ C of chicken broth and bring to a simmer.
5. In a small skillet, melt the butter then add the flour and cook over moderate heat, stirring for about 2-3 minutes.
6. Whisk the butter/flour mixture into the soup until incorporated and bring to a simmer. Cook until thickened.
7. Add the heavy cream, cheddar cheeses and the remaining beer and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thick and creamy.
8. Stir in the bacon and season with salt and pepper. Add a few tablespoons of broth if the soup is too thick.
Serve the soup with garlic toasts & a pint of Deschutes River Ale, of course!