Tomato soup is one of my favorite soups. And full disclosure, my favorite meal of all time is soup and sandwich. This recipe uses fresh tomatoes, but you can use your own canned fresh tomatoes from an earlier season (I’m just learning to can fresh vegetables). I love the different colors and shapes of heirloom tomatoes. As an added bonus, I add fresh carrots to this recipe. It doesn’t alter the taste, but it does increase your daily vegetable intake. I love to serve this with crusty bread, grilled cheese cubes or even cornbread. The fresh cream that I use comes from Pittsford Dairy ; a perfect example of one of the things I missed from upstate NY while living in the deep south the last decade.
3 pounds fresh heirloom tomatoes (rinsed and cut in half)
3 carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces
4-6 garlic cloves peeled
3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 yellow onion peeled and sliced
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 and 1/2 quarts chicken stock or vegetable stock
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon sugar
3-4 dried/fresh bay leaves
1 cup heavy cream
1-2 fresh basil leaves, optional
additional salt and black pepper for taste,
Cover cookie/baking sheet with foil. In bowl mix tomatoes, carrots, garlic, thyme and onion tossing with olive oil and salt.
Transfer to cookie/baking sheet. Roast in 425 degree F oven for 20-30 minutes or until caramelized.
Remove roasted vegetables from oven. Allow vegetables to cool and remove skin from large tomatoes (peel). Place remaining roasted vegetables in large stock/soup pot with butter. Cook an additional 5-7 minutes on medium heat. Cover with 1 quart of chicken stock. Bring to boil adding bay leaves, sugar, and additional salt and black pepper to taste. Boil for 5 minutes, then reduce heat and cook on low for 15 minutes.
Remove bay leaves and thyme and use an immersion stick to puree soup in pot until smooth. If you do not have an immersion stick, ladle soup into blender and blend 2 cups at a time. Return to pot ensuring heat is on low. Add basil leaves at this point, if using. Alternate adding heavy cream and remaining chicken stock by the 1/2 cup full. Again, make sure stove is on low to avoid curdling of cream. Whisk thoroughly when adding each liquid.
Garnish each bowl with a splash of remaining heavy cream.