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Sweet Potato Bacon Chowder

6 slices bacon, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
4 cups sweet potatoes, peeled and diced (about 2 large)
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup kale or spinach, roughly chopped
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

In a large pot, cook chopped bacon over medium heat until well done and crispy. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside, but do not drain fat from pot.
Add onions and carrots to pot and cook until soft, 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and cook one minute more.
Stir in broth, sweet potatoes, bay leaf, and thyme. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until potatoes are tender, 12-15 minutes.
Using an immersion blender, blend about half of the soup until desired consistency is reached. (If you don’t have an immersion blender, remove half of the soup to a blender, puree, and then return to pot.)
Stir in kale or spinach and cook until wilted. Add whipping cream and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Top with cooked bacon and serve. Enjoy!