Tomato and Basil Soup with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

After all of the beautiful Spring weather we have been having, yesterday we awoke to the crack of thunder and pouring rain, which literally did not stop all day.  I didn’t mind so much, since we have plenty of study to do and I was scheduled to get my last 2 wisdom teeth extracted – so all I could think about eating was this soup.

Since I was feeling fine after the extraction I went to the grocery store to pick up ingredients, but as soon as the local anaesthetic started wearing off I realised it was a big mistake to go anywhere without at least having a couple of nurofen.  Waiting in line at the check out I had a cracker of a headache and the whole side of my face was throbbing – but after a lay down and some painkillers I was back in action again, ready to get busy in the kitchen.

This soup is an absolute winner, and the best part is it doesn’t even need cream to taste so good!  Make it when you can get cheap ripe tomatoes (I got 2kg for $3) – it certainly isn’t a dense winter soup, it is perfect to eat all year round.

The recipe is from Delicious Magazine and is the best tomato soup I have tasted.  The original recipe has melted bocconcini, which is pretty amazing – but without it, it doesn’t feel like anything is missing, so I prefer to reserve the cheese for pizza nights.

Ingredients (serves 6)

  • 12 (about 1.2kg) roma tomatoes
  • Pinch of caster sugar
  • 1 tbs olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
  • 12 cherry tomatoes (I used more as I very much enjoy them in this soup)
  • 1tbsp unsalted butter and 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 each onions, carrots, celery stalks and garlic cloves, chopped
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tbs sundried tomato paste (if you can’t find this, just add chopped sundried tomatoes)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 basil sprig, plus extra leaves to garnish
  • 1L (4 cups) vegetable stock

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C.  Halve the roma tomatoes and set them cut side up in a baking dish.  Sprinkle with a little sugar, drizzle with olive oil and bake for around 30 min or until softened.

In the meantime, add butter and olive oil to a large based saucepan and add the mirepoix (chopped carrots, onions and celery) and garlic and stir over a low to medium heat.  Cook until softened but do not allow the vegetables to brown (around 2-3 min).  Add tinned tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, bay leaf, basil and vegetable stock.  Add roasted roma tomatoes and any cooking juices.  Bring to the boil and then simmer on low heat for at least 20 min, until all vegetables have softened.

Meanwhile, Place cherry tomatoes in a tray, drizzle with olive oil and put in the oven for ~10 min or until softened and slightly browned.  Set aside to serve atop the soup.

Allow the soup to cool slightly and then blitz (if you have a stick mixer that would be ideal, otherwise do it in batches in the blender).

Now here is the trick that is a bit of a pain but makes this soup so smooth and fabulous – pass the soup through a sieve into another pan, pushing through as much tomato pulp as possible while straining out the seeds and skins.  It does take a while but it is worth a bit of elbow grease now – you will appreciate it later.

(note – I have been lazy and not bothered to strain this soup and it still tastes good, just you get little bits of tomato skin in amongst the soup.  It really depends on your personal preference if it is worth the effort to you)

Season with salt and pepper and serve topped with roasted cherry tomatoes and basil leaves, with melted bocconcini or shaved parmesan if you wish.

Recipe from: Delicious Magazine

Photos from: my camera

 

I have been reading Plate to Pixel by Helene Dujardin (Fabulous food stylist, photographer and blogger of Tartelette) and was so inspired by this book!  I couldn’t wait to go op shopping for wooden bowls, table linens and vintage cutlery, and get in the kitchen to take some photos.

I am so so happy with how these turned out and loved applying all the advice and tips that she writes about in her book.  I highly recommend it, especially if you want to take better photos of food!  It is not too advanced for beginners but also has a lot of useful stuff if you already have a good grasp on your camera settings!

 

One thought on “Tomato and Basil Soup with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

  1. Lucent Imagery

    The photos look amazing! I love the styling and light. I keep putting off getting that book, but I know I will probably get it sometime. Love the soup too. I’ve been enjoying my homemade tomato, carrot and lentil soup lately. Love making big batches to freeze for when I’m too tired to cook.

    Reply

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