I’m back – well, sort of. These pictures keep distracting me and taking me back to my comfort place. It’s a good thing this is what I wanted to chat about today. Soup, soup, soupitty soup.On Monday I shared with you my recipe for slow-roasted winter tomatoes and how slow roasting tomatoes in the oven deepens and intensifies the tomato flavor. Which, let’s be honest, can so often be absent from winter tomatoes.
Over the next couple of weeks, I am going share several recipes that those slow-roasted tomatoes can be part of. More like ‘the star’ of, actually. I promise to break up the recipes a bit so it doesn’t seem like a tomato explosion over here, but honestly, I can’t make too many promises. I’ve got tomatoes on the brain.
To be honest, I had never made homemade tomato soup before because I always worried it would just taste like tomato sauce. Sure, I’ve eaten the stuff out of the can, but I never really loved the smooth stuff. At least for dinner. For dinner, I like a chunkier soup. Something with a little body to it. So, here were my two challenges with tackling the roasted tomato soup:
- Make it taste like soup, not sauce.
- Give it a good hearty texture, worthy of ‘dinner’.
As for the texture challenge, I realize that is a personal preference. I like the chunky texture, because I don’t like to drink my dinners (despite rumors to the contrary) which is how I always feel when I eat perfectly smooth tomato soup. Because of that, I didn’t process mine until completely smooth. How you make yours is completely up to you. You will get no judgements from me if you enjoy the smoothest of the smooth soup. We’re in a judgement free zone over here.
The soup turned out incredibly flavorful and beautifully textured (if I do say so myself) and we paired it with little crunchy garlic croutons (recipe below) and the aforementioned ooey-gooey grilled cheese sandwiches. And we all lived happily ever after – or at least until the soup ran out.
makes about 8 (1 cup) servings
12 slow-roasted tomato halves
1 – 28oz can good quality whole tomatoes in purée.
2 tsp olive oil
2 small onions, chopped
6 roasted garlic cloves, chopped
4 reg garlic, minced
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
2 celery stalks, sliced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 cups broth (vegetable, chicken or turkey)
6 whole basil leaves
Salt and pepper
*note: if you don’t have slow roasted tomatoes on hand, this soup can be made with all canned tomatoes. Just replace the roasted tomatoes with a 28oz can if whole tomatoes in purée. You can also leave out the roasted garlic as well, and just increase fresh garlic by a clove.
In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and both types of garlic, cook until softened and fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Add carrots and celery and cook until beginning to soften, about 4 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir for about 1 minute or until the tomato paste becomes a bit golden.
Add tomatoes, broth, basil, salt and pepper. Bring to boil.
Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until carrots and celery are tender and flavors have blended, about 30- 40 minutes.
Remove from heat and allow to cool for about 5 minutes.
Using a food processor or blender, work in batches to process the soup to your desired consistency. I like a chunky tomato soup, so left mine a bit chunky. Alternatively, you can use an immersion blender directly in the pot.
Return soup to the pot over low heat and adjust seasonings to taste. Allow to simmer, uncovered for 10 minutes.
Serve soup with croutons and grated Parmesan cheese.
10 oz crusty bread, cut into cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 375.
Heat oil in skillet over medium/low heat. Add minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly until garlic is fragrant.
Toss in bread cubes and stir, making sure to coat cubes evenly with oil mixture.
Spread bread cubes onto a rimmed sheet pan.
Bake for 15-20 min, tossing once halfway through cooking time, or until the croutons are dried and golden.
Remove the croutons from the oven and season with salt and pepper.