Hi internet! I've been trying to lean into winter and make a lot of soups and stews. Today I'll be covering tomato soup, which I know is really comforting for many people but I actually did not grow up eating it and don't have strong emotions about it. I love tomatoes and soup though so I decided to give it a try.
This recipe is adapted from The New York Times' tomato soup recipe, but heavily modified as I found their rendition a little too creamy and sweet and not savory enough for my taste.
-1/2 lb (8 oz) unsalted butter (this comes out to 2 sticks)
-1 lb onions (about 3 medium), cut into 1/4-inch dice
-6 cloves garlic, chopped roughly
-1/2 cup all-purpose flour
-4 28-oz cans of diced tomatoes or whole tomatoes, diced (I used Cento San Marzano whole peeled tomatoes* and diced them up)
-2 tbsp fresh chopped basil, or more to serve
-1 1/2 cups chicken broth
-2 tbsp sugar
-1 tablespoon kosher salt
-1 tablespoon celery salt
-3/4 teaspoon pepper (I grinded this amount of black pepper)
At the end
-1/3 cup half-and-half
-1/3 cup grated parmesan, or more to serve
-2 tbsp honey
-one large stock pot
-hand or regular blender
*I recommend checking out this video on whether San Marzano tomatoes are worth it.
(Just a heads up that some of the photos have bad lighting and look a little off - I was cooking at night and my stovetop light doesn't work.)
Dice your onion and chop up your garlic. If you bought whole peeled tomatoes, dice them.
Then, melt your butter over medium-low heat in your stock pot.
Once melted, add the onions and garlic and let cook for about 20 minutes until translucent. Stir occasionally.
Then add the flour and stir frequently for about 3 minutes, until the mixture is thicker and pale gold. Don't let things brown.
Stir in tomatoes and their juices, chicken broth, sugar, salt, celery salt, pepper, and basil. Raise the heat until medium until the soup bubbles, and then reduce heat down to low.
Let it simmer for 30 minutes. Here and there, scrape the bottom of the pot.
Once your soup is done simmering, add in the half-and-half, honey, and parmesan. Stir and remove from heat.
To make the soup smooth, you can use a immersion blender as I did, or you can wait a bit for the soup to cool down and then transfer it to a regular stand blender.
Salt if necessary and serve with some grated parmesan and basil.
Then I made a grilled cheese with sourdough and American over my new cast-iron skillet :)
This soup is comforting, and savory. It really benefits from the grilled cheese. I think I could maker it even more to my liking if I added even less half-and-half and maybe some oregano, to make it even more savory and tomatoey. But to be honest, I'm a little sick of tomato soup now, I've been eating it a lot so this will do for now.
My next post will probably be about chili.