I need to make this again and take a new picture, because this image does notttttt at allllll convey the deliciousness that is this quintessentially fall soup. I've said this many times before, but the best meals come from something that starts like this: "Great, there is nothing in the house to cook with, so let's order Lao Szechuan". That quickly transforms into "Hey what about this 2-days-away-from-beginning-to-rot apple and half bottle of apple cider?" and "Ooo! 5 potatoes!" and "Mowgli has had enough of this turkey bacon, let me now add it to the soup". Before you know it, uninspired-ness turns to sorcery and I am cleaning out the last bits in my fridge and pantry to create a clean slate for my next grocery run. That's how I made this soup. And I'm not even mad because it was just too good. How's that for modesty.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
- 4 stalks green onion, chopped
- 5 pieces turkey bacon (skip for veggie)
- 1 apple, diced
- red pepper flakes
- garam masala
- 2 cups apple cider
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1/4 cup half and half (I only used this because I had it, but usually I would skip)
- 1/2 cup 2% milk
- Salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a heavy pot and saute the onion until it softens, 2-3 mins. Add the garlic, cilantro, green onion, turkey bacon, and apple, then the spices: nutmeg, cinnamon, red pepper flakes, and garam masala. Pour in the apple cider and veggie broth and bring to a simmer. When everything is cooked (check apple and potato pieces for done-ness with a fork), add the half and half and milk. Stir through and cook for a few more minutes before turning off the heat. I like my soups creamy so I puree'd it at the end, but you can keep it as chunky as you like. Season with salt and pepper.
I loved the creaminess from the potatoes and milk, the warmth of the spices, smokiness of the turkey bacon, and the tart-sweet combo from the apples. I might have to make this year-round.