Saturday, September 12, 2009

First soup of the season!

I know it really hasn't turned into "soup" weather yet...but that's one of my favorite things about fall and I'm getting excited. I love soups.

This soup is a perfect end of summer, start of fall soup. If you have a garden, it's the perfect recipe for all those yummy home grown tomatoes you don't know what to do with.

The soup pictured below, is missing the basil. The grocery store was out, but I was craving the soup so I made it anyway. It tastes much better with the me.

(Mindi Original)

½ lb bacon, diced
2 large leeks, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 C. peeled, diced potatoes
2 cans (28 oz each) whole tomatoes with juice (or about 6 C. fresh chopped tomatoes)
2 C. chicken broth
1 t. salt
¼ - ½ C. fresh basil, chopped (I love the basil flavor so I use ½ C. but if you prefer a more subtle basil flavor, only use ¼ C.)
1 C. cream
1 C. Parmesan cheese
1 T. sugar
salt & pepper to taste

1. In a large stock pot, cook bacon on medium heat, until crispy.
2. Remove the bacon from the pot with a slotted spoon. Set aside on a plate lined with a paper town. Leave the rendered fat in the pot.
3. Add the leeks and garlic to the pot, cooking in the bacon fat until soft.
4. Add the potatoes and cook for about 3-5 minutes.
5. Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, salt and basil. Cook until the potatoes are cooked through; about 20 minutes. (test with a fork)
6. Stir in the cream, cheese, and sugar. Mix until cheese in melted.
7. Use and immersion blender to blend about half the soup mixture.
8. Add the bacon back into the soup.
9. Salt & pepper to taste.

*I serve this soup with homemade Parmesan croutons. I take a baget and slice it thin. Drizzle some olive oil, salt and Parmesan cheese on top. Broil in the oven for 2-4 minutes until crispy.

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