I had some lovely cherry tomatoes that needed using up plus a heavy midwinter cold that needed a dose of comfort soup. Normally I’d be in the pantry reaching for a tin of Heinz cream of tomato soup but I’ve been avoiding sugar for a while so dragged myself and a box of tissues to the kitchen to make a healthier soup. And it was definitely worth it.
Ingredients (all amounts are approximate, use what you have to hand)
- 500g cherry tomatoes
- 4-6 large garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
- 1 large or 2 small leeks, sliced
- 100g smoked bacon lardons (optional)
- 1 rib of celery, sliced
- A handful of frozen peas, defrosted
- 1 or 2 400g (14oz) cans of cannellini beans, rinsed
- 1.2 litres (2 pints) vegetable or chicken stock
- Worcestershire sauce
- Dried or fresh thyme
- Seasoning and oil
- Preheat the oven to a moderately hot setting of 200-220 (400-425F; Gas 6-7).
- Put the tomatoes and garlic in an oven proof dish or tray, sprinkle with olive oil, seasoning and the herb of your choice (thyme works really well) and cook in the hottest part of the oven for 20 minutes or so.
- Meanwhile fry the bacon lardons (if using) and leeks until crisp and soft respectively (about 15 minutes).
- Add the stock then the roast tomatoes and garlic, peas and canellini beans.
- Adjust the seasoning, bring to the boil and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
- Serve immediately with crusty bread or a toasted cheese sandwich.
Additional and alternative ingredients
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- Other fresh or frozen vegetables such as broad beans, green beans, courgettes.
- Add some chilli flakes and kidney beans.
- Lentils or barley.
- Add orzo pasta along with the stock and cook for a little longer (according to packet instructions).