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