Tuesday, October 14, 2008

roasted tomato soup

on a whim, i tried this recipe over the weekend. it was a FABULOUS hit, and here's the proof: my kids ate it. they had seconds and thirds...and the real kicker? they asked me to MAKE IT AGAIN the NEXT DAY.


because cooking is such a labor of love for me, i get really bummed out if someone doesn't like the food i've spent time and energy and LOVE preparing. this is particularly true for my kids. i try to avoid setting myself up for failure by avoiding things i know they won't touch with a ten foot pole, but they are also not really picky. they eat very well and they always have. i rarely have to fight with them to eat...and to eat healthy.

i had about 18 tomatoes from our garden and i didn't know what i was going to do with them. and then suddenly i remember that my good pal natalie had mentioned that she cans tomato soup. so i thought HEY! i could make homemade tomato soup. i started searching on the internet and this is what i came up with. i combined the ingredients from 2 or 3 recipes, so i'm claiming this one as my own work.

warning: it sounds complicated, but TRUST ME...it is not. it really is not. and it's SO WORTH it. did i mention there were zero leftovers? ZERO.

here we go. roasted tomato soup. from my kitchen to yours.

*8 cups fresh tomatoes, peeled, cored and cut into slices or large chunks
*5 large cloves of garlic, peeled
* 3/4 cup olive oil, divided
*1 onion, diced
*3 stalks of celery, sliced
*1-2 carrots, peeled and sliced
*1 32-oz. carton of chicken broth
*1/2 stick of butter (just say no to margarine, remember?)
*1 tsp. dried basil
*2 or 3 bay leaves
*kosher salt and pepper

preheat oven to 450 degrees. remove the skin from the tomatoes by placing the tomatoes in boiling water. the skins will split almost immediately - remove from boiling water, place in cool water to remove the skins. remove the cores and chop into smaller pieces. spread the tomatoes and whole, peeled garlic cloves on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. drizzle with about 1/4 cup olive oil, sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper. roast for about 30 minutes. try not to eat too many of the fresh tomatoes while you are cutting them up.

while the tomatoes roast, heat the remaining olive oil in a large kettle. add the diced onion, the carrot and the celery ( a little secret - if the leaves on the celery are nice and green, i throw them in the pot. they have tons of flavor and you're going to be grinding this all up anyway.), season with kosher salt and pepper. cook for about 8-10 minutes. add the chicken broth, the butter, the bay leaves and the basil (if using dried). cover and simmer while the tomatoes roast. when the tomatoes and garlic are done, remove from the oven. add the tomatoes and the garlic to the kettle, stir well. taste and adjust seasoning. cover and simmer for 30 minutes. remove bay leaves and puree with an immersion blender*. also, if you are using fresh basil, add it after pureeing, not before.

serve with french bread, grilled cheese sandwiches or even store-bought ravioli. this recipe can also be prepared by using canned tomatoes (3 15-oz cans), just drain the juice and reserve before roasting. add the reserved juices to the broth for cooking.

*you don't have to have an immersion blender to make this soup, but it is very handy. mine has different attachments to whip cream or blend drinks - and it was about $20 at wal*mart. you can use a blender or your food processor, OR you could even not puree the soup at all...but it's better all pureed. if you use your blender, remove the center plug in the lid, and cover with a cloth while you puree. that will keep it from exploding all over your kitchen.


Stacey Irwin said...

I completely agree with takeing it personally if they don't like your food.. Since I don't cook for ME! The easy crap meals I don't care.. But when it's all fresh... that is harder for me to take critism on.

I'm impressed you really are quite the cook!

This one looks really tasty. I might just have to try it this next week.. When I do I will be sure to let you know how it went!

jess said...

stace - awww thanks. u r so nice.

i forgot to mention several of the recipes i saw included about 1/2 cup of heavy cream. i DID have some, but i thought the soup was plenty rich without it. i already put in a half a stick of butter, so i left out the cream. it's an optional ingredient.

maybe i should start taking some photos of my food. i can't take photos while i'm cooking, but i can take pics of the end result.

Grandy said...

I get very sensitive with my cooking too. How does it taste? Is it alright? Can I get anyone anything?

I'm kinda pathetic when it comes to me and my cooking.

Bridge said...

I am just pissed I didn't get any. /sigh Tomato soup is my FAVE!

Anonymous said...

Somehow I wound up with a bunch of tomatoes and the first thing I thought of was this recipe. Dinner tonight is going to be yum!!