Roasted Tomato Soup

I like to eat soup. Luckily, I also like to cook soup. Recently, I woke up in the morning to the first crisp air of the fall season. Summer was officially over. Instead of missing the bright days of summer, I was excited to get into the days of autumn when a warm bowl of soup and a sandwich make for a great lunch. The only question I had to answer was what kind of soup would I make first? A slightly spicy roasted tomato soup answered the question. I’ll warn you, I’m not much for measuring so these are estimates.

So we’ll start with the list of ingredients.

  • 8-12 cups of tomatoes, halved or quartered depending on size – variety is good (I used 8 medium hothouse tomatoes, 3 medium yellow tomatoes, 1 pint of yellow cherry tomatoes, 1 pint of red cherry tomatoes and 4 roma tomatoes)
  • 1 bunch of basil
  • 1/2tsp red pepper flakes
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, chunked largely
  • 1tsp dried Italian seasoning
  • sprinkle of pepper
  • 3tbsp + 1tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2-3tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 3-4 carrots, chopped
  • 3-4 stalks celery, chopped

First thing, preheat the oven to 425°, and then add the tomatoes to a large bowl.

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Add in the basil, red pepper flakes, garlic, Italian seasoning, pepper and 3tbsp olive oil to the bowl and stir until well coated.  Add this mixture to a baking sheet lined with foil to make clean up easier.

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While the tomatoes are in the oven, add 1tbsp olive oil to a large pot or Dutch oven then add the red onion and cook for about 5 minutes at low to medium heat until the onion starts to soften, not brown.

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Add the balsamic vinegar keeping the temperature low and beware, heating the vinegar makes the house smell pretty vinegar-ie for a few minutes but I promise, it’s worth it.  Cook the mixture until it reduces.

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Then add the carrots and celery and maybe a few tablespoons of water to keep the mixture from burning.

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About this time the tomatoes should be done after about 25-30 minutes.  Once done, blend the tomato mixture once it is finished in the oven.  Don’t worry about being too precise, it will be blended once more.

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Add the blended mixture to the pot and cook it together for about 10-15 minutes until the carrots and celery are soft.  Then blend briefly once more until the soup reaches the consistency you desire.  In my blender, that was about 20-30 seconds worth of blending for a relatively smooth soup.

Then serve up and enjoy with a grilled cheese sandwich or a slice of crusty French bread that’s perfect for dipping.

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