The winter here has been a quite harsh this season. It's been so cold that I actually use the space heater, wear my Snuggie (don't judge), wear socks to bed (usually don't), layer myself in three or more blankets and I have no urge to go out let alone go outside (what can I say, I have sensitive skin). The best remedy to get through the Winter blues is by making more soup. So far this year, I've made three. This is quite the accomplishment considering hat we are only on day 13 in 2011. Let's hope that this momentum continues throughout the year. Anyway, I don't know why I made this soup especially since I'm not the biggest fan of tomatoes. Oddly enough, I do have a soft spot in my heart from tomato bisque,V8 and salsa. Tomato bisque and grilled cheese sandwiches with sourdough bread ... I'm in heaven. This definitely is the COMFORT meal of the month!
Roasted Tomato Basil Soup (6-8 servings)
From Ina Garten
- 3 lbs ripe plum (aka Roma) tomatoes cut in half lengthwise
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 1/2 tspn black pepper
- 2 cups chopped yellow onions (about 2 onions)
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/4 tspn crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 (28 ounce) canned plum tomatoes with their juice (I used regular diced tomatoes in a can)
- 4 cups fresh basil leaves
- 1 tspn fresh thyme leaves (I left this out)
- 1 quart chicken stock or water ( I used chicken stock)
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Toss the tomatoes with1/4 cup of olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread them out on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes.
3. 15 minutes before the tomatoes are done roasting, saute the onions, garlic, 2 tbspn of olive oil, butter and red pepper flakes in a large stockpot for 10 minutes over medium heat. Once th onions start to turn brown, add the canned tomatoes, basil, thyme and chicken stock.
4. Remove the roasted tomatoes from the oven and add it to the pot. Also add any liquid that is left on the baking sheet into the pot.
5. Bring the pot to a boil and allow it to simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.
6. Take the soup off the food mill and use the coarsest blade. I don't have such equipment so just took a fork and stabbed all the tomatoes until they were broken up into smaller chunks. It made the soup less chunky but still chunky enough. You can probably also put it in a blender.
7. Get some tasty sourdough bread and American cheese and grill it on the skillet. Cut it diagonally across and serve it with a bowl of soup. Sandwiches taste better when they are cut diagonally :) Really!
This soup is so good!!! The one thing downside of it is that it is a bit acidic. It lingers in your mouth just a little after sipping the soup and I think this is because of the tomatoes' acidity. Not really sure how one can make it less acidic but I would suggest eating more bread or grilled cheese sandwiches because more carbs are awesome anyway.
Updates on my goals:
- I baked for the first time in forever. I didn't even break out the whisk this Christmas! Oh the madness! The recipe is from Joy the Baker. If you go to her link (below), please excuse my poor decorating skills here. She did an amazing job with all the sprinkles and perfect glaze. You must know, I am just learning how to make glaze. :l
- Lethal legs class numero uno kicked me in the butt today but I shall survive! Lunges and squats are not a girls best friend.
- I ran for ten minutes last night. Yes 10. That's good enough for me :)