Apple, tomato and smoked bacon soup

After trying my hand at pea & mint soup, last week, I decided to have a go at another soup this week.

To be honest, I have actually wanted to make my own soup for a while, but had never found the time to do it. I had even picked up copies of three of The New Covent Garden Soup Company‘s recipe books, when I saw them discounted, around six months ago. So maybe it’s time to cook something from one of them!

After flicking through all three, I set my heart on “apple, vine tomato and smoked bacon”, from Soup for All Seasons. In the book, this is listed as a spring soup, specifically for March. Call me picky, but I tend to think of the season for apples and tomatoes – they specifically call for “ripe vine tomatoes” – being the other side of summer. Never mind; my curiosity is already piqued so I’ll make do with whatever Sainsburys have been storing in a warehouse. The recipe also calls for rashers of smoked bacon, which I replaced with pre-cut smoked bacon lardons.

You can read the fill recipe in the book, but here’s my summary:

Ingredient Soup maker’s percentage Mass used today
Vegetable stock 100% 500g (or 500ml if you prefer)
Coxes apples, peeled and diced 60% 300g (2 medium apples)
Plum tomatoes, skinned and chopped 120% 600g
Smoked bacon lardons 50% 250g
Onion 60% 300g (1 medium onion
Garlic 1% 5g (1 clove)
Brown sugar 1% 5g (1 teaspoon)
Sage leaves, finely sliced 0.2% 1g (6 leaves)
Butter 5% 25g
Olive oil 2% 10g
  1. Finely chop the onion and garlic, and gently fry, for around ten minutes, in the butter and olive oil.
  2. Add half the bacon and cook for a couple more minutes.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients, save the sage leaves and remaining bacon. Bring to the boil and simmer for around one hour.
  4. Around ten minutes before you end the simmer, heat up a pan and fry off the remaining bacon bits until they are crispy. There is no need to add oil; the fat from the bacon will be enough.
  5. Blend the contents of the pan, then stir in the sage leaves and bacon bits.
Everything in place, ready to make the soup.

To skin the tomatoes, I poured freshly boiled water over them and left the for around 90 seconds, after which I drained the water and replaced it with cold water from the tap. This causes the skins to separate from the flesh, allowing you to peel or rub them off the tomatoes.

The tomatoes sit in boiling water for around 90 seconds.

After sitting in the boiling water, the skins slide straight off the tomatoes.
All that remains for the tomatoes is to chop them up.

Everything in the stock pot, ready to simmer for an hour.
After simmering for an hour, the soup looks more like this.
With the soup blended, I stirred in the bacon pieces and sliced sage leaves.
Served up with some home baked bread, sneakily dipped in the leftover bacon fat!

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook