Chipotle-Rosemary Sweet Potato Soup with Bacon

Morita chiles are red, fully mature Chipotles. This gives them a unique, medium – hot smokey flavor which is popular in many Southwestern dishes. These can be added to sauces (including Mole) to add smokey flavor and maintain the red color of the sauces. These peppers are about 2-4 inches in length, 1 inch in width, and have a deep brick reddish brown color. The word Chipotle translated to smoked chile. Consider the Chipotle a 6.5 on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the hottest). Scoville heat units 7,000-25,000.

Suggested Use:
Use Morita in enchilada sauces, chili, stews, barbecue ribs, and corn bread. Their smoky quality combines well with poultry, meats and fall squash.

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1 1/2 pounds garnet yams or sweet potatoes
1/2 pound carrots
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 teaspoon cumin, divided use
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary, divided use
3 strips bacon, chopped
1 leek, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon pureed chipotle peppers (rehydrate chiles in hot water first)
1/4 cup dry white wine
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth (plus more as needed)
1/2 cup heavy cream
grated cheese, optional


Serves 4-6.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Peel and chop sweet potatoes and carrots into chunks. Toss in a glass baking dish with olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, and1 teaspoon of rosemary. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fork tender. Remove from oven and reserve.

In a dutch oven, fry chopped bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels, reserving bacon grease in pot. (There should be about 2 tablespoons.)

In the same pot, add leeks and shallots. Saute over low heat until caramelized. (This takes quite a while…well over 20 minutes I think, but I forgot to set a timer. Be patient-it’s worth it.)

Add remaining cumin and rosemary, garlic and chipotle puree. Stir to combine and let cook for a few minutes.

Add white wine to pot, scraping bottom to deglaze. Let liquid cook mostly down, then add roasted sweet potato and carrot mixture.

Pour in chicken stock. Bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer on low for about 10 minutes.

Using an immersion blender, puree mixture until smooth. Add chicken stock as needed to achieve desired thickness. When pureed, stir in cream. Season with salt and pepper. Return pot to heat and warm through.

Serve topped with reserved bacon and grated cheese, if desired.