BLT Soup

I love homemade soups in general. They tend to be quick, versatile, and nutritious.  Soups help me economize both time and leftovers. Some can be thrown together quickly when crunched for time, others can be simmered in a slow cooker to be ready and waiting at the end of a long hard day. I do have a few soup recipes requiring quite a bit of prep, and not for the faint of heart cook…. like my Hot & Sour Soup. I like to freeze leftover soups, which provide a quick solution on those days when things don’t go as planned, or I suddenly find myself with a house full of unexpected guests (usually hungry teenage boys).  Today I was in the mood for soup, but we’re having unseasonable, record-setting 85 degree weather. I’m still in winter food mode, and having a difficult time switching culinary gears.  It’s simply too warm for something like my Fire Roasted Tomato and Wild Rice Soup, and Chilled Avocado Soup is just all wrong for March.

My BLT Soup recipe, with its light potato soup base and fresh raw veggies,  is perfect for transitioning seasons. This recipe was inspired by a similar soup I had in a restaurant years ago.  I did find a few BLT soup recipes online, but not like the one I ate all those years ago.  After some tinkering this is what I ended up with.

BLT Soup
4 or 5 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon butter
2 Tablespoons flour
3 cups chicken broth
1 heaping tablespoon corn starch
Salt & Pepper

BLT Toppings
Crumbled bacon
Shredded lettuce, or other greens
Chopped Tomatoes
Croutons (Zesty Tomato Garlic Croutons recommended)

If you make your croutons and bacon ahead of time, this soup can be relatively quick to put together.  Here’s my bacon technique (I get some really great bacon made from organic pastured pork, and no added nitrates). I cut the bacon into pieces using my kitchen shears, and then toss it in the pan to cook. I try to keep a jar of crumbled bacon on hand in the refrigerator as a quick salad topping.

See my earlier post for making Zesty Tomato Garlic Croutons …. or use store-bought if you prefer.

Melt butter and olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add diced potatoes and cook until tender.  Don’t worry about the potatoes sticking to the bottom of the pan a little.   Once the potatoes are tender, add flour and stir until all oil and moisture is absorbed.  Next add the chicken broth and stir until the broth starts to heat up.  Mix the heaping tablespoon of corn starch with 2 or 3 tablespoons of water, and add to the broth.  Continue to stir until the soup thickens. Salt and pepper to taste.

This is one of those soups that does not have to be served piping hot.  In fact, I like to wait for it to cool a little before I assemble my bowls.

Assemble by ladling soup into bowls and then topping with bacon, lettuce, tomato, and croutons.

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