How to Make It
Preheat broiler. Toss corn and tomatoes in olive oil, and place on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Broil 8 inches away from heat about 5 minutes or until corn and tomatoes are golden brown and tender. Set aside.
Cook bacon in a large stockpot over medium heat until crispy. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon; set aside.
Add onion to bacon drippings in pot. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in garlic and next 5 ingredients; cook 2 minutes. Stir in broth and reserved corn (set aside a few kernels), tomatoes, and liquid from baking sheet. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Blend mixture with an immersion blender until smooth, or transfer to a blender and purée in batches until smooth. Stir in bacon (set aside a few pieces). Ladle soup into bowls. Top with reserved corn kernels and reserved bacon, and garnish, if desired.
Note: For a smooth soup, strain through a wire-mesh strainer, and discard solids. Stir in bacon, and reheat soup, if necessary. Makes 7 1/2 cups.