The weather is so gray and rainy right now. I sort of love it, actually, because it makes me want to make something warm and tasty. Something soothing and soul comforting. Like tomato soup.
It's a cruel twist of fate that tomatoes are absolutely and completely out of season during soup season, when I want nothing more than a steaming hot bowl of tomato soup with a melty grilled cheese on the side.
Tomatoes ought to just be ripe and tasty year round. I love tomatoes. Someone ought to tell the powers that be about my wish. Pray to your gods and make it so.
In the meantime, I've come up with a pretty good fix for lackluster winter tomatoes. Roasting them for a while with some onions and garlic really spruces up their flavor and makes for a robust tasting soup at any time of year.
This recipe makes a small batch but you could easily double or triple the recipe because it freezes very well.
Oven Roasted Tomato Bisque
- 2lb ripe tomatoes
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- 2cups (16oz) chicken broth
- ¼ cup basil, roughly chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- ¼- ½ cup heavy cream
- pinch of red pepper flakes
- salt & pepper to taste
Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
Cut tomatoes into wedges and place skin-side down on parchment. Evenly distribute onions and garlic over tomatoes; season with salt and pepper, drizzle with olive oil. Roast for 35-40 minutes.
Transfer roasted tomatoes, onion and garlic to a large pot and add broth, basil and bay leaf. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
Transfer soup to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and puree until almost smooth (I like mine with a bit more texture). Return to pot and stir in cream. Season with red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot. Preferably with a tasty grilled cheese.