Sunday, January 28, 2007

The best tomato soup

In the spirit of thinking of something other than babies or MBAs I wanted to share a tomato soup recipe based largely on one from the good folks at Cook's Illustrated. I love tomato soup but haven't had much luck finding a good recipe/pre-made product.

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Strain and seed 2 28 oz. cans of whole tomatoes (Muir Glen are the best), reserving the juice and seeds.
  3. Lay the seeded tomatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with foil.
  4. Sprinkle with a layer of brown sugar and put in the oven until liquid has evaporated, about 30 minutes.
  5. Toward the end of the 30 minutes cook 2 very large shallots minced, 1 tbsp tomato paste, and a pinch of allspice in 4 tbsp of olive oil on medium low heat, covered, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8-10 minutes. (They called for 4 large shallots but just 2 of mine looked like plenty. They also used butter but I preferred the clean taste of olive oil.)
  6. Turn heat to high, stir in 2 cups of chicken broth, the reserved tomato juice and bits from the seeding process, and the roasted tomato pieces.
  7. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 10 minutes or so, allowing the flavors to blend.
  8. Turn heat off, use a slotted spoon to pull out tomato pieces and put them through a blender with a little of the soup broth and add back to pot.
  9. At this point you can add cream and sherry but because I prefer my vegetable soups uncreamy I didn't.
  10. I served this with quiche, green salad and baguette. Delicious!

I also made a Vietnamese beef and noodle dish this week found on The Splendid Table website that was especially tasty. Lots of preparation but really fantastic flavors. Will share another day.

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