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)|
- Finely chop the onion and garlic, and gently fry, for around ten minutes, in the butter and olive oil.
- Add half the bacon and cook for a couple more minutes.
- Add the rest of the ingredients, save the sage leaves and remaining bacon. Bring to the boil and simmer for around one hour.
- 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.
- Blend the contents of the pan, then stir in the sage leaves and bacon bits.
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.