Ready in 45 minutes
Nice soup - they are always better than canned versions. Add less water for a thicker soup!
Prep Time: 30 mins; Cook Time: 1 hour
1. Fry the bacon over a medium heat in a large saucepan. Once the bacon is cooked, remove half and set aside. Continue to fry the remaining bacon until crisp. Remove from the saucepan & place in a seperate bowl, then pour the bacon fat into another small bowl. Set aside.
2. Heat the butter in the same saucepan & add the leeks & celery. Cook over a low to medium heat for about 10 mins until the veggies are soft & golden. Add the tomatoes, potato, basil & bay leaves and stir well. Cover with a tight fitting lid & simmer over a gentle heat for 30 mins, without removing the lid.
3. Stir in the tomato paste & soft bacon, then remove from the heat. Blend in a food processor until smooth.
4. Return to the saucepan & add the stock. Cook until steaming, then add the lemon juice & sugar and season w/salt & pepper. Remove from the heat. Serve with a spoonful of cream, sprinkled w/ bacon & croutons.
5. Croutons - Heat the reserved bacon fat in a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Cut the bread into cubes & fry until crisp & golden.