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Tomato and Fresh Basil Soup


It’s time to use up this late summer tomato crop. This soup is the perfect way to do it. It comes from The Best-Ever Vegetarian Cookbook [2].  I love this cookbook because of the easy step-by-step instructions, really great photos of the cooking process and a nice reference section about storing and purchasing fruits, vegetables, pasta, grains and legumes.

When making this soup, I let the tomatoes simmer much longer than the 20 minutes that were suggested in this recipe. I’m sure the soup would still taste just as good but I think the extra simmer time did let the flavors meld a little bit better.

I also did not have sun-dried tomato paste on hand.  So, instead, I used some whole sun-dried tomatoes that I had on hand, reconstituted them by soaking them in some boiling hot water for about 10 minutes. I chopped the sun-dried tomatoes into little pieces and added them, along with some of the soaking water, into the soup.

Tomato and Fresh Basil Soup
The Best-Ever Vegetarian Cookbook [2]

Heat oil and butter in a large saucepan until foaming. Add the onion and cook gently for about 5 minutes, stirring, until the onion is softened but not brown.

Stir in the chopped tomatoes and garlic, then add the stock, white wine, and sun-dried tomato paste, with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil then lower the heat, half-cover the pan, and simmer gently for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep the tomatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Process the soup with the shredded basil in a blender or food processor, then press through a sifter into a clean pan.

Add the cream and heat through, stirring. Do not allow the soup to approach the boiling point.

Check the consistency and add more stock if necessary, then season with salt and pepper. Pour into heated bowls and garnish with basil. Serve at once.