Yield: 4 servings
* Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
* 6 slices lean, smoky good quality bacon, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
* 3 small ribs celery from the heart of the stalk, finely chopped
* 2 small to medium carrots
* 3 leeks, trimmed of rough tops and roots
* 1 bay leaf
* Salt and pepper
* 3 medium starchy potatoes, such as Idaho, peeled
* 2 quarts chicken stock
* 1 (15-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes, drained
* Handful flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
* Crusty bread, for dunking and mopping
Heat a medium soup pot or deep sided skillet over medium-high heat. To
the hot pan add a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and the bacon.
Cook bacon until brown and crisp. Add the chopped celery. Take peeled
carrots and lay flat on cutting board. Hold each carrot at root end
and use the vegetable peeler to make long, thin strips of the carrot.
Chop the thin slices into small carrot bits or carrot chips, 1/2-inch
wide. Add the chips to celery and stir. Cut leeks lengthwise and then
into 1/2-inch half moons. Place the leeks into a colander and run
under rushing cold water, separating the layers to wash away all the
trapped grit. When the leeks are separated and clean, shake off water
and add to celery and carrots. Stir veggies together, add a bay leaf
and season with salt and pepper. While the leeks cook to wilt, 3 to 4
minutes, slice the potatoes.
Cut each potato across into thirds. Stand each piece of potato upright
and thinly slice it. The pieces will look like raw potato chips.
Add stock to vegetables and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and add
potatoes and tomatoes. Cook 8 to10 minutes until potatoes are tender
and starting to break up a bit. Add bacon and parsley and stir. Adjust
seasonings. Serve immediately with crusty bread.