Soupe au Pistou with Bacon

Although I’ve been making French pistou soup for over 30 years, my inspiration for today’s soup came from my heroine, Rachel Khoo.  I liked that she used summer vegetables because I usually make this soup in the winter.  I didn’t like that she used canned beans and gave you the option of frozen peas, when fresh are so plentiful in the summertime.  Still Rachel Khoo is still kool to me 🙂

Okay, I added bacon because I felt like it but it is not necessary and the traditional soup doesn’t have it.  The soup is good with or without.  If you want to skip the bacon, saute the onions and garlic in 3 tbsp of olive oil, instead of two.  Also because I used fresh beans and peas, cooking times were different.  If you want the original recipe, the book is called Little Paris Kitchen.  Pistou is a French cousin to the Italian pesto.

Soupe au Pistou with Bacon

1/4 cup bacon, diced

2 tbsp olive oil

2 onions, chopped

3-4 large cloves garlic, chopped

2-3 cups shelled fresh coco beans

4 tbsp tomato paste

1 branchy fresh sprig of thyme

2 bay leaves

2 quarts of water

2 carrots, diced

1 large courgette, diced

1 cup fresh green beans, cut into 1 inch pieces

1 cup shelled fresh peas

1 cup dried small pasta

Salt and pepper

3 cloves garlic

1 bunch fresh basil

3-4 tbsp olive oil

Fry the bacon until brown, add the olive oil and saute the onions and garlic until soft.  Add the beans, tomato paste, thyme, bay leaves and water.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the carrots, bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer for 10 minutes.  Add the green beans, peas, courgette, pasta, salt and pepper.  Simmer for another 10-15 minutes.

For Pistou

In a blender, blend the garlic cloves, basil and olive oil.  Add a dollop to each individual serving of the soup and stir in just before eating.

Wine suggestion:  Macon Village

About cookinginsens

An American living in Burgundy, France
This entry was posted in Cooking, Food and Wine, French, Main dishes, Recipes, Soup and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to Soupe au Pistou with Bacon

  1. Mad Dog says:

    You need to see Rachel Khoo cooking badly on TV – it put me off, as do canned and frozen vegetables. Your recipe, however, sounds delicious 😉
    This is what alarmed me: where she cooks lamb at 8:13 – it’s not good technique and the garlic would be burnt.

    • Hater 😀 I like the recipe but I wouldn’t and don’t necessarily use her techniques. In fact, for this recipe, I would brown the meat, remove it and then brown the onion and garlic.

      • Mad Dog says:

        She’s a perfectly nice girl, but I’m bothered that she’s teaching a TV audience how to cook badly. I’d do exactly what you said – that’s the right way 😉

  2. cecilia g says:

    This sounds like a perfectly lovely soup and the back would have added another depth to your lovely collection of tastes. Fresh is always best if you can get it.. always.. have a lovely day.. c

  3. This sounds great! Rachel Khoo is all right, she’s not the best cook though… This sounds great… you just had to add meat didn’t you? Defiling the lovely veggies 😀

  4. Wonderful looking soup! I am making a green bean-pea-chicken soup/stew tonight. 🙂

  5. Thank you Sibella. Your soup sounds so good! Enjoy!

  6. Such a very good soup. I love it.

  7. joshuafagans says:

    I’m definitely a fan of Pistou though I too usually cook it in the winter. With the weather here getting into the 90s I think I will have to hold out a bit ;).

  8. rsmacaalay says:

    This would be so tasty, Love it

  9. m&m says:

    Beautiful! Love pistou!

  10. Tessa says:

    Delicious looking soup! Love that bowl!

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