Wednesday, September 15, 2010
I decided to do a special Wednesday food blog, because the soup I made is so good I can't wait to share.
A couple weeks ago I made the most delicious thing: Prawns with Garlic, Chiles and Yellow Tomato Confit. (recipe here.) It was so good I've made it 3 times since and made gallons of the confit and froze it so we can have it in the winter.
To make the confit, you put tomatoes, onions and herbs in a baking dish, add enough olive oil and water so that the tomatoes are almost covered, bake it for almost an hour and then puree. In addition to the huge amount of good olive oil, it's the baking process brings out the sugars, melds the flavors and gives the tomatoes a lovely creamy texture that makes the dish so yummy. So, while eating it (and wondering if it would be weird if I poured it in a Big Gulp sized cup and drank it with a straw like I would a milkshake) I thought about making tomato soup in a similar way.
And yesterday, that is just what I did! I substituted vegetable stock for much of the olive oil in the original recipe because the confit is only part of a larger dish and would be too rich for straight up soup. I added some thyme and a little sugar because red tomatoes are more acidic than yellow ones and used fewer chiles.
It came out wonderfully! It tastes like it has cream in it even though it's vegan!
4 cloves garlic
1 cup red onion, sliced
4 sprigs oregano
4 sprigs of thyme
4 sprigs basil
1 bay leaf
2 chiles de arbol
1 tablespoon sugar
3 pounds tomatoes
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup vegetable stock (I used some I made that had some water from soaking dried porcinis in it.)
1 1/2 cup water
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400º
Put the onions, garlic, oregano, thyme, basil, and chile in a baking dish. Core the tomatoes and place them, upside down on top of the onions etc.
Add the olive oil, stock and water and sprinkle with the sugar and some salt and pepper. Be careful not to over salt it, most vegetable stocks are already pretty salty. Put it in the oven on top of a cookie sheet, just in case, and bake for 50 minutes.
When it's all bubbly and done, remove it from the oven and let set for 10 minutes or so. Drain the vegetables over a bowl so you catch all the juice and remove one of the chiles and the herbs. If some of the leaves fall off, leave them in. Just be sure to get the stalks out.
Puree the tomatoes etc in a food processor or blender for a few minutes until smooth and then add the baking juice to get a nice soupy consistency and puree for a minute or two more.
Heat through and serve with a grilled cheese sandwich. Best tomato soup ever. No lie.