I know, I know, it hardly seems like a post for soup is appropriate when we’ve had a string of 70 degree days, right? Really, though, I would eat this soup in the dead heat of summer. It’s that good. And you just need something to put in those pretzel bread bowls we made earlier this week, anyway.
In an effort to enjoy the last of these gorgeous fall days, Himself and I blew off our chores for the afternoon, packed a picnic lunch, and headed out exploring. And then I promptly came home and made you this photo collage. Always thinking of you, invisible internet friends, always thinking of you.
The lake pictured there is Lake Winnibigoshish. I’m a sucker for the wayside rests and historical markers, so I can proudly tell you that Lake Winnie is Minnesota’s fifth largest lake and the name comes from an Ojibwe phrase meaning “filthy water.” Probably the coolest thing about this lake is that Mississippi flows through the lake. Yeah, that wee little river that I could dance across, that there is the Mighty Mississippi. I’m always so fascinated by the transformation of this river as it traverses the state.
Ok, enough nature nerd for now. Let’s talk bacon instead. I know for many of you, a road trip to Meatopia is probably out of the question, so any good thick cut bacon will do. If you get a chance, buy yourself some uncut slab bacon. That’s my go-to purchase at Meatopia, that and their amazing porketta sausages. On a day, where I’m feeling the most productive, I’ll slice and dice that bacon myself, cook the whole thing down, and portion it up for the freezer. Then, I’ll have bacon for soup, pasta, and pizza, in other words, Jessica will be the happiest. My chest freezer is a magical place where summer sweet corn, Meatopia bacon, and garden fresh basil hang out just waiting to be called to center stage. You can use whatever bacon you have on hand, but the thicker the cut, the happier you’ll be too.
Wild rice soup with bacon and corn
Adapted from Lund’s and Byerly’s Wild Rice Soup
6 Tablespoons butter
¼ cup minced onion
½ cup chopped carrots
½ cup flour
3 ½ cups chicken broth
3 cups cooked wild rice
¾ cup (about 10 slices) cooked bacon
1 cup sweet corn, frozen works fine if thawed
2 Tablespoons basil, chopped
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon salt
Black pepper to taste
1 ½ cups half and half
In a large pan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add onions and carrots and cook about 5 minutes, until onions are soft. Add flour, cook until lightly golden brown. Add broth ½ cup at a time, stirring well between additions. Once all the broth has been added, bring to a boil stirring constantly. Cook two minutes until thickened. Add wild rice, bacon, basil, and remaining seasonings. Simmer five minutes. Add half and half, and heat until warmed through. Add additional salt and pepper if necessary.