I went all out on this recipe and was pleasantly surprised. Walter Bishop made a reference to popcorn soup on Fringe the other day, so I went on a hunt for a recipe. Found a non-vegan one that I was able to veganize. It was kind of like liquid cheese, but delicious none the less.
- 3 cups popcorn
- 2 cups blue corn tortilla chips
- 1 bottle beer
- 1 container vegan bacon slices, cut in to 1 inch pieces
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 1 can jalapeno, diced
- 3 ribs of celery, chopped
- 2 TBsp garlic
- 1 tsp thyme
- 2 cups veggie broth
- 1 cup almond milk
- 2 TBsp brown sugar
- 2 sticks (8TBsp each) margarine
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 cups soy creamer
- 3 bags daiya cheddar (yeah, it was a lot)
- 1 tsp pepper
- 2 tsp salt
- chopped scallions
- 1 TBsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin
First I made the chili popcorn. Crush the tortilla chips and mix with the popcorn in a large baking tray. Melt 1 stick margarine in the microwave and stir in the cumin, chili powder, and a dash of salt and pepper. Stir this mixture over the popcorn mixture in the tray, coating the chips and popcorn well. Top with a sprinkling of daiya cheddar. Set aside while you work on the soup.
In a large pot cook your fakin’ bacon until brown, then set aside. Next place your onion in the soup pot and add the brown sugar, cooking on medium heat for 6-8 minutes until carmelized. Add 1/2 the bottle of beer to this and cook until most of it has been evaporated. Next add the celery, jalapeno, garlic, and thyme, cooking until soft for another 6-8 minutes. Add the other half of the beer bottle and cook for another 5 minutes. Then add the veggie broth and reduce the heat to simmer.
In a separate small soup pan melt the remaining butter and whisk the flour in to this. Once melted and browned add this to your larger soup pot. Once the soup appears thick, add the creamer, almond milk, and cheddar cheese, adding a little more flour if you need to make the soup thick. Add the fakin bacon back in and add the salt and pepper. Cook for about 15 minutes, stirring constantly.
Once the soup is done, top it with the scallions and the chili popcorn mixture. This was an incredibly rich and creamy soup, so rather than serving it with just bread or in a bread bowl, we threw together some veggie packed sandwiches to go with it. These sandwiches had tomatoes, sprouts, avocado, and spinach on them, as well as a little vegan mayo. Super simple but the packed veggies were a nice compliment to the heavy soup.