GREAT NORTHERN BEAN SOUP WITH BACON, CHORIZO AND HERBS

 

 

  • 1  1/2 pound thick-sliced bacon, diced in 1/4 inch pieces
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 spanish onion, finely diced
  • 2 carrots, finely diced
  • 2 celery ribs, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 pound Great Northern beans, soaked overnight in plain water, then drained
  • 10 cups chicken stock
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 2 chorizo sausages, cut in 1/4 inch pieces

In a fry pan, cook the bacon over moderate heat, stirring, until browned and crispy, about 10 minutes.  Drain, reserving the fat and bacon separately. 

Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot.  Add the onion, carrot and celery and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes.  Stir in the garlic, bay leaf and 1 tsp. each of the chopped thyme and rosemary and cook until fragrant about 2 minutes.  Add the drained beans, stock and 3 T of the reserved bacon fat and bring to a boil.  Simmer the soup over moderately low heat until the beans are tender, about  1  1/2 hours.    Fry cut up chorizo in 1 T olive oil for 2-3 minutes, drain then add to the soup mixture.

Chorizo gives this soup added flavor and color!

Discard the bay leaf and stir in the remaining thyme and rosemary.  Season the soup with salt and pepper and transfer to shallow bowls.  Garnish the soup with the bacon pieces and serve.  Serves 12

Make ahead:  The soup and bacon can be refrigerated separately for up to 4 days.  Recrisp the bacon before serving.

  1. Side note:  I doubled this recipe for these pictures because I was making it for 25 people!
  2. Side Note:  Chorizo is a term encompassing several types of pork sausage.  There are many different varieties and mostly made with pork meat and paprika.  Spanish Chorizo is my favorite.
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