so. i’ll tell you a little bit our family dynamics…and some of you may understand and nod your head…others, notsomuch. a little over six months ago, my dad passed away, very unexpectedly and my mom is coping as well as anyone could expect. she has good days…and some days where everything goes to s**t…and because i work from home, essentially, i’m her main sounding board. we’ve always been close (well, maybe not in high school or most of my college years) but not in the ‘she’s my best friend’ close…just…well, you get it. right?
anyway, my mom calls me today to tell me she’s never going out and about, again. i pause…waiting for the story. she tells me about her purchases from the u-bake store (and dropping the shamrock-shaped cookies), her frozen lobster bisque (with lobster from maine), and then she rattles off what she bought at the grocery store…ending with a snickers bar (pause)…and a bag of lettuce. my mom’s idea of lettuce is iceberg. she likes that it crunches. why? because she grew up in the late 40’s and 50’s with a huge garden in bay view (milwaukee) and all they ate was ‘curly lettuce’…her words, not mine. iceberg lettuce was a treat. and…i tell her i’m making roasted tomato soup. i can almost hear her lips curling up as i add that i’m happy to bring her some, already knowing the response…about campbell’s. well, i tried. not too hard. but…in any fashion, the recipe is from the award-winning madison-area food blogger, things i made today…and here’s the real deal…and this is my lazy, i-do-not-have-everything-called-for, version.
oven roasted tomato soup
prep time: 10 minutes cooking time: 35-40 minutes serves: 6-8
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 5-10 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 1/4 t spicy pepper (we had chipotle on hand)
- 1 t fresh thyme
- 1 c oven roasted tomatoes* (or sun dried tomatoes in oil – drained)
- 2 c half and half
- 1/8 c maple syrup
- pinch of lemon peel (i had dried on hand)
- splash of lemon juice
- salt and pepper, to taste
in your favorite soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat – add onions and cook until translucent. add garlic and cook for another 30-45 seconds. stir in wine and cook to reduce by about half.
add broth, tomatoes, spicy pepper, lemon peel, and thyme. bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for about 20 minutes (with the lid on).
remove from heat and puree the soup with an immersion blender (one of my favorite kitchen tools), or in a blender (be very careful…hot soup+blender+forgetting to put a towel on the log and hold down=soup everywhere).
return to low heat and blend in half and half; cook for an additional 5-10 minutes. stir in maple syrup – salt and pepper to taste…and a splash of lemon juice to brighten. sprinkle on some fresh thyme and you are good to go!
* my tomatoes were previously oven roasted back when we had an over abundance of tomatoes coming in…and i just pulled them out to the freezer. mine were romas, in case you were wondering. and, i didn’t add any garlic or herbs…just oil, salt and pepper…and a whole bunch of tomatoes. i did trays of them at a time because…why not. tomatoes are in season and coming in faster than i can pick them and this is easier than canning them, which i do, as well.
and, as an aside, we get almost (almost, almost) all of our produce from our csa share (organic), favorite farmer’s market vendors (organic principals), or our own garden (organic principals…read: lazy gardeners) or, our favorite co-op stores…again, in case you were wondering.
add a slice or two of your favorite bread…and brace yourself for some more winter weather. because, pretty soon we’ll be braving the mosquitos and heat to harvest yet another crop of beautiful tomatoes. enjoy!