Sweet Potato Soup with Melted Cheddar and Spinach
- 1/2 C. pancetta or bacon, chopped
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 1 carrot, peeled, diced
- 2 sweet potatoes, peeled, cubed
- 3 14-oz. cans chicken broth
- 1 C. water
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 C. whipping cream
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
- 1-1/2 C. shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 C. baby spinach leaves
Saute pancetta in 2 tablespoons olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat until it is golden brown. Add onion, carrot and sweet potatoes. Saute until vegetables soften, 6-8 minutes. Stir in chicken broth, water and thyme sprigs. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 25 minutes, or until vegetables are very tender. Remove thyme sprigs from soup.
Puree soup in batches in blender or processor, then return soup to Dutch oven. Stir in whipping cream, nutmeg and spinach. Cook just until spinach is wilted and soup is heated through.