Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Bean and Fresh Herb Soup with Cheddar-Thyme Popovers


Are you anxious for spring? So am I! Here is a light soup that is easy to make and very satisfying if you're still in the mood for soup.  Last week, we had a new blanket of snow on the ground so we were in the mood. 


I whipped up some easy 'blender' popovers to serve with the soup which are so easy to prepare that you can have them on the table in less than an hour.


I few crumbles of crisp bacon on top is optional but oh, so delicious. 


What a difference a week makes!  The photo above on the left with our two oldest grandsons is from just last Sunday when they were here for an overnight and the two photos on the right were taken yesterday when it was 70F!  March always has it's ups and downs, Lions and Lambs. Spring is coming!  

Bean Soup with Fresh Herbs

 
Note:  Remember to soak dried beans overnight according to package directions.  

1/2 pound thick-sliced bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely diced
2 celery ribs, finely diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 bay leaf
Several sprigs of fresh thyme
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme (reserved)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 pound Great Northern beans, soaked overnight and drained
10 cups chicken stock
Salt and freshly ground pepper

In a large soup pot, cook the bacon over moderate heat, stirring, until browned and crisp. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and place on paper toweling to drain.  Leave about 1 tablespoon or so of bacon fat in the pot.

Add the onion, carrot and celery and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic, bay leaf, 2-3 sprigs of thyme and chopped rosemary and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the drained beans and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Simmer the soup over moderately low heat until the beans are tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs, then stir in the remaining chopped thyme and rosemary. Ladle into bowls and garnish the soup with the bacon and serve.

Make Ahead: The soup and bacon can be refrigerated separately for up to 3 days. Recrisp the bacon before serving.

Note:  The bacon can be omitted altogether and you may use olive oil instead of bacon fat to saute the vegetables in the pot.  To make the soup totally vegetarian you may substitute vegetable stock for the chicken stock. 

Inspired by Food and Wine

Easy Blender Popovers


2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup sifted flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon canola oil 3 tablespoons grated sharp cheddar cheese (Optional)
2 teaspoons dried thyme (Optional)

Preheat oven to 475F

Brush popover pan or muffin cups with melted butter or spray with non-stick baking spray such as Bakers Joy. Be sure to brush or spray around the rims also.

Combine eggs, milk, flour and salt in a blender. Blend for 1 minute. Add the oil and blend for 30 seconds. Add optional ingredients and pulse once or twice.

Fill popover or muffin cups half full and bake for 12 minutes. Reduce heat to 350F and bake for 30 minutes longer. Prick popovers with a toothpick or fork to let steam escape and bake for 5 more minutes.

This recipe yields approximately 6 popovers.

Recipe may be doubled. Try using other cheeses and herbs of your choice!
 
Inspired by Be Our Guest

33 comments:

  1. I'm still in the mood for soup and those popovers looks delicious, a warm hug, xoxo

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    1. I don't make them that often but I love popovers ;) Thank you, Chiara. Hugs.

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  2. I love beans any time! We're in the upper 70's here in Philly and I see crocus and will have fresh cut daffs from the yard in a day or two. Welcome spring:@)

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    1. Upper 70s?! And daylight savings time coming this weekend! Welcome spring, indeed!

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  3. Love beans love boys:)
    The color os your soup is so sunny and warm!

    I had to smile at Dane..like our boys..so many different patterns /colors going on:)And..he looks beauteous..I try too hard..lol..
    remind me to tell you a cute story about 3rd born..boys in my daughter's family:)
    OMG crocus..ours would have to be giants. Still so much snow...melting though.


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    1. Dane is wearing Mack's hand-me-down snowsuit from Mack. One day, Bo will wear it too, hopefully, unless Dane wears it out. He is hard on clothes ;) First little blooms of the year - love, love looking at them! You always catch up quickly there, M! xoxo

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  4. Despite the fact that the past two days here have been glorious--sunny and 70 degrees--we always love a good soup on the table. After all, isn't that what air conditioning is for? Darling boys!

    Best,
    Bonnie

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    1. They say soup is good for the waistline too but I love it for the comfort factor. We've had a couple of beautiful days but it's cooled off again. We're not 'out of the woods' yet ;) Thank you, Bonnie!

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  5. I just love the first crocuses! And this soup is so sunny looking also! We seem to be having a really early spring. I think we could be cutting the grass by next week!

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    1. So do it, Abbe! It's the 'light at the end of the tunnel' for me :) Your weather in Colorado is so nice. I'll always remember dining outdoors on Pearl Street in Boulder without having to swat mosquitos. Glorious!

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  6. Replies
    1. I could eat popovers any time :) Thank you, Madonna!

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  7. Spring is not quite here yet...now it's minus 1C....COLD. The soup looks so comforting and those fresh homemade popovers are unbeatable!

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    1. That is cold, Angie! Our average for this time of year is about 4C but we're way above average right now. Have a wonderful day and thank you!

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  8. What a beautiful soup Susan and who doesn't love popovers. I can eat soup no matter what the weather.
    Sam

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    1. Thank you, Sam! Popovers are the best and we will still have many soup days here too. Have a great weekend!

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  9. You are in soup mode! You and my sister would love each other...she's the soup maker in the family. I make a few but never on a regular basis.
    The color here is amazing...looks like spring in a bowl and I'd love those flavors. I used to make a popover you put into a cold oven...so easy and quick. Now I have Neiman Marcus nearby when I get popover cravings. You just can't beat theirs.

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    1. This has been the a soup craze in my kitchen lately :) Wish I had a Neiman close by! I love their popovers and muffins. Thank you, Barbara!

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  10. I'll take an order of each - both the soup and the popovers look wonderful and I love the combination!

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    1. Ha Ha ;) They are a great combo, Chris. Thank you!

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  11. Great Northern beans are my favorite...so creamy...I love the idea of serving the bean soup with the popovers...and yes, with bacon please!
    Spring is almost here...
    Hope you are having a fabulous week Susan :)

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  12. Hi Sue! An easy bean soup is always good this time of year, and the bacon crumble on top is always yummy! I love your popovers here...and have to add them to my menu for Easter, thanks for a simple recipe! PS... this weather has been crazy every where... Have a great weekend!

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    1. Thank you, Ladies! It was light yet filling too if that makes sense :)

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  13. Susan, it seems you have all bases covered! A delicious, warm soup for the tummy, and three beautiful grandsons to warm the heart.

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    1. Love to have those bases covered :) Thank you, Sol!

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  14. cool these look like yorkshire puddings my grandma made them with roast beef. Nice idea to eat them with soup

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    1. I think the only difference is there are isn't any beef drippings in plain popovers - otherwise the same thing. Thank you, Rebecca!

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  15. This week has been really cold around here and this soup looks like the perfect remedy!

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  16. Almost impossible to post a comment here because of my skitzy iPad. I was saying your grands seem to enjoy cold weather and I know that you enjoy the spring kind. This soup with the cheese popovers on the side looks so delicious.

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  17. Still here! Oh, meant to say that my basil seeds took just a week to pop up.

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  18. This soup looks and sounds delicious! And I love the easy popover recipe, will have to try it soon! Gorgeous!

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  19. It's been so unseasonably cold here this spring, so this soup would be very welcome on our table! The popover recipe with cheese sounds delicious and I think it would be very difficult for me to share them!!!!

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