Thursday, April 12, 2012

[Eat] Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

My favorite tomato basil soup is from Nordstom Cafe-- it's creamy, it's tomato-y, it's tasty, it's comfort food at its best. Have you had it?  My mouth waters just thinking of it. Unfortunately, my local Nordstrom doesn't have a cafe, so I've been determined to make my own version.  

I've tried several recipes, but I found that if I use Ina Garten's recipe and tweak it a bit to make it a little sweeter and creamier... it comes pretty close to Nordy's. 

Click "Read more" for the recipe
Creamy Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

  • 3 pounds ripe tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large sweet onions
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 large carrots, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 (28-ounce) canned plum tomatoes, with their juice
  • 4 cups fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 1 pint heavy cream (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Toss together the tomato halves, 1/4 cup olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread the tomatoes in 1 layer on a baking sheet, skin side up (ignore my photo!) and roast for 45 minutes.

In a large stockpot over medium heat, saute the onions, carrots and garlic in olive oil until the carrots are tender.

Add the canned tomatoes, basil, and chicken stock. Add the oven-roasted tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.

Cool the soup a little and pass it through a food mill fitted with the coarsest blade. Season with salt and pepper. 

[edited to add: My kids like the soup smooth, so nowadays I also run the soup through the blender. It's an additional step, but worth it IMO].

Return the soup to the stockpot. Stir in the cream, a little at a time over low heat until the desired texture is reached and the soup is heated through.  The cream is optional, but I think it sends this over the top.  Yum!

I usually serve the soup with grilled cheese sandwiches or fried chicken.  Enjoy!

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