Thursday, September 15, 2011

Heirloom Tomato Soup

I just have to make recipes right now to use up the bounty of tomatoes coming from our garden.  With many, many days of 85-95 degree weather in the middle of September, the tomatoes have decided to ripen all at once.  The picture below is one Sunday morning's harvest.  As there are just The Gardener and The Cook  in our home, I look for recipes that will freeze for the future and this fits the bill.
This recipe comes from Lynne Rossetto Kasper's wonderful site for her radio show on PBS called The Splendid Table.  If any of you foodies out there haven't discovered her weekly hour long radio show devoted to all things good in food and wine, you must tune in.  Of course
it's available to download via podcast so there is no excuse not to listen.  It is informative, inspirational for cooks, and often amusing. 

I used all yellow heirloom tomotoes and I opted not to serve this soup with the heavy cream called for.  I wanted to savor the wonderful, pure taste of tomatoes and basil in soup form.  Very delicious!
Heirloom Tomato Soup

Extra virgin olive oil
3 medium onions, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 large cloves garlic, minced
Pinch hot red pepper flakes
1 generous tablespoon tomato paste
2-1/2 to 3 cups chicken broth (homemade preferred, but low sodium canned works, too)
A big handful fresh basil leaves, torn
15 medium or 10 large delicious ripe tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped (do capture their juices for the soup)
1 cup whipping cream for serving

Generously film the bottom of a 12-quart pot with olive oil. Set over medium high heat. When warm, add onions and about 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions start to color.

Stir in the garlic, red pepper, and tomato paste. Cook 1 minute. Add broth, basil, and tomatoes. Bring to a lively simmer, cover the pot, and cook 15 to 20 minutes, or until tomatoes are softened and soup tastes fresh, but mellow. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Once soup has cooled, puree two-thirds in a blender or food processor. Rewarm or serve close to room temperature. The all-important finish is stirring a generous tablespoon of cream into each bowl.  This soup freezes well without the cream.  Serves 6-8.

1 comment:

Ms. Divina Loca said...

Those are beautiful tomatoes - congratulations to the gardener. The soup looks delicious!