In spite of the unusually poor tomato season this summer (mild summer translates into not enough heat for their ripening) we have still managed a bountiful harvest from our garden.
While the taste of our raw garden tomatoes might be oddly unspectacular at the moment, they still cook up into something wonderful.
Of course, in our book everything is better with bacon, which is probably why we like this soup so much.
Yukon Gold potatoes are preferred because they hold their shape well and don't disintegrate into the soup the way Russets can.
Recipe adapted from one submitted by Verrill Farm for The Best of Tastes cookbook fundraiser for Concord Family Service.
Tomato, White Bean, Bacon Soup
We've used canned white beans here for their convenience. If you want you can take this soup up a notch and use dried beans, you can make them on the stovetop or in a pressure cooker.
* To peel fresh tomatoes, cut a shallow cross on one end, blanch in boiling water for about 30 seconds, remove from boiling water and the peels should easily come off.
1/4 pound bacon, diced
1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups potatoes, peeled and chopped (about 3/4 pound, we recommend Yukon Gold)
6 cups fresh tomatoes, peeled, chopped (or canned whole tomatoes with juice)*
2 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 (15-ounce) can white beans, drained
Salt and pepper, to taste
Cook bacon on medium heat in a large thick-bottomed pot (5 to 6 quart) until lightly browned and fat is rendered.
Use a slotted spoon to remove bacon from the pan. Set on a plate lined with a paper towel. Drain off all but 1 Tbsp of bacon fat.
Sauté onion and garlic, add potatoes:
Add the chopped onion to the pot, cook in the bacon fat on medium heat until soft.
Add the minced garlic and cook a minute more.
Add the chopped peeled potatoes and cook a few minutes more.
Add tomatoes, stock, simmer:
Add the tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, lower heat to maintain a simmer. Cover and cook until potatoes are cooked through, about 20 minutes (or longer).
Add beans, blend half the soup:
Stir in the brown sugar. Add half of the beans to the mixture. Use an immersion blender to blend about half of the soup mixture (or blend half of the soup in a standing blender and return to the pot).
Add bacon, remaining beans:
Add bacon to the soup and the rest of the beans. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with crusty bread.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 8 to 10|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 5g||6%|
|Saturated Fat 2g||8%|
|Total Carbohydrate 28g||10%|
|Dietary Fiber 5g||16%|
|Total Sugars 7g|
|Vitamin C 19mg||97%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|