makes six to eight servings
5 thick slices applewood smoked bacon, cut into 1/2-inch strips
1 large yellow onion (or 2 small), diced
2 large carrots, diced
3 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 cups French lentils (lentils de puy)
8 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon Madras Curry powder (or other yellow curry powder)
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
salt & pepper
1 large handful of cilantro leaves
Set a very large pot over medium-low heat and cook the bacon until the fat renders and it begins to crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and reserve the bacon. Add the onions and carrots to the pot and cook in the bacon fat until soft – about 10 minutes.
Add the sweet potatoes, lentils, chicken stock and curry powder and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low or low and cook for 30 – 40 minutes, or until the potatoes and lentils are tender. To thicken soup, mash the soup with a potato masher (or ricer) about 15 times. (This is optional.)
Add the sherry vinegar and taste the soup. Add salt and pepper as needed. Ladle into bowl and sprinkle with bacon bits and fresh cilantro leaves.
bacon recipe courtesy of: Melissa Camero Ainslie, Bitchincamero, Miami, Florida, January 6, 2010 | Ad Hoc at Home by Thomas Keller. Artisan, 2009