Last weekend my kitchen was graced with the presence of Dan, one of my closest friends I’ve lived apart from for quite some time. A fellow lover of soups and generally just appreciative of good and creative food, we decided it would be a shame not to cook something up together.
Hungover, slightly nauseous, exhausted, and bitter because it was SNOWING outside, this was our first and only meal of the day on a Saturday at 3PM. We were indecisive and lazy but we knew we definitely wanted bacon. And maybe a bottle of wine. Actually, definitely a bottle of wine. Okay, we bought two bottles of wine.
When I have guests over for soup and I want to impress, I’ll usually go with my Tomato Dill. When I asked Dan what he thought about that, he admitted to hating dill, so I reluctantly scratched that idea. Remembering that we wanted bacon, but thinking that a soup would also be fitting since it was SNOWING, the BBT was born.
The Sriracha was a last minute addition since we both abuse it in most dishes. Don’t skimp on it here; it’s the perfect finishing touch without taking it too far.
And now, a few words from Dan:
You’ll only discover if you try to create, and knowing that both Katie and I have have at least moderately well-developed palates, I knew we would throw together something that worked. Fresh basil is completely necessary. Here, a modest amount actually flavoured the soup quite thoroughly. When cooking with fresh herbs, it’s generally best to add them toward the end of the actual cooking so as to preserve their flavour.
Paired nicely with what turned out to be a somewhat dilute bottle of pinot noir, but so it goes.
The stovestop certainly got pretty soupy, and remember: bacon grease is your friend!
- 5 lbs ripe red tomatoes, quartered
- 500 g bacon, cooked until crispy, roughly chopped
- 3 big handfuls of fresh basil
- 4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 bulb garlic, minced
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 1 tbsp thyme
- 2-3 tbsp Sriracha
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Green onions, chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss tomatoes in olive oil and salt and roast for 40 minutes to 1 hour or until softened and starting to brown on edges. While tomatoes are roasting, cook the bacon in a large stock pot, roughly chop, and set aside.
In the last 10 minutes of roasting the tomatoes, toss the onions into the pot with half the amount of bacon grease. Cook about 10 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and thyme, cook another 5 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, lemon juice, chicken stock, and deglaze the bottom of the pot. Bring to boil, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Add the basil and Sriracha and blend the soup in batches. Add back to the pot and stir in the heavy cream, sour cream, and bacon. Bring back to a simmer and serve.
Garnish with green onions and some bacon.
Serves 4 – 6.