Salsify and Potato Soup with Bacon and Thyme
This is a lovely, light wintry soup. The earthy salsify makes it interesting.
1/2 medium onion, finely diced
1 slice bacon, diced
2 medium potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 lb salsify, trimmed
1/2 teaspoon fresh or dried thyme
Pinch of chili flakes
5 1/2 cups water or vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon salt
Parsley and olive oil for serving
Fill a bowl with cold water and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar. Peel the salsify and as soon as you peel each one drop it in the acidulated water.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and bacon and and saute for about 5 minutes until onion has softened. Add the diced potato, thyme, salt and pinch of chili flakes. Stir well and cook for about 5 more minutes. Meanwhile remove the salsify from the water and cut it into 1/2-inch rounds. Add it to the potatoes and pour in the water or broth. Bring soup to a boil, turn down to simmer and cook gently for about 10 minutes until the salsify and potatoes are tender. Adjust seasoning with salt and serve hot with chopped, fresh parsley and a drizzle of olive oil and good, crusty bread.