Just the thing for a blustery, snowy day, roasted tomato soup fills the house with the most intoxicating smells. And the best part is how easy it is to make. I used a recipe adapted from Cook’s Illustrated.
Roasted Tomato Soup
1 28 ounce can whole, peeled tomatoes
1 TBS dark brown sugar
5 or 6 shallots, finely diced
2 TBS butter
2 TBS olive oil
1 TBS tomato paste
1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
1/4 cup sherry
1/4 cup heavy cream or half and half
Set your oven to 450 degrees.
Set a strainer over a bowl and pop open the tomatoes with your fingers and pull out as many seeds as you can. Don’t worry if you miss a few. Let all the tomato juices strain into the bowl and set aside for later.
Spread the tomatoes out on a lined cookie sheet. I used two pieces of foil on a large cookie sheet. I don’t recommend this as the juices got in the seam of the foil and made the foil stick to my cookie sheet. I wasn’t happy. Next time I think I would use one sheet of parchment paper or I might just oil my cookie sheet and watch the tomatoes carefully. Sprinkle the tomatoes with the brown sugar and roast for 20-30 minutes or until most of the liquid they exude is gone.
Roasted tomatoes. I refrained from sticking a fork in there and eating my fill. I loved roasted tomatoes.
Heat a pot with the olive oil and butter in it. Add the finely chopped shallots and saute over medium low heat. You don’t want to caramelize them, so watch carefully. Full disclosure: I burned the shallots. Oh, the shame…I forgot what I was doing and got distracted. So at the last minute I wiped out the pan and quickly chopped one small onion and sauteed it in fresh butter and olive oil.
When the shallots (onions) are translucent and just starting to color, add the tablespoon of tomato paste and mix it in with the onions. Add the reserved tomato juice and the caramelized tomatoes and raise the heat to bring to a boil. Add the chicken stock. As soon as it comes to a boil, lower the heat back to medium and let the soup cook for ten minutes. Add the sherry.
Now, you can either blend it in a blender or food processor in two batches or use an immersion blender to make the soup smooth and creamy. Once the soup is blended, put it back on the heat and add the cream or half and half.
Serve with olive oil drizzled on the top. I just had some at lunch and it’s even better the next day. The next time I make it I think I will infuse some basil into it.