One of my favorite late-summer salads is the simple, yet amazing Caprese Salad - a combination of fresh mozzerella, garden-fresh basil and vine-ripened tomatoes with a splash of oil and balsamic vinegar. Mmmmm.
As summer gracefully bows to autumn, there's still an abundance of tomatoes and this easy roasted tomato soup is a perfect place for the toms to come into their sweet, full, fall flavor.
Use any variety and a combination of tomatoes, if you like. You'll also need:
1/2 cup olive oil
5-8 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 onion cut into eighths
salt and pepper
a bunch of fresh basil, chopped (if you really can't get some, dried will do)
2-4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 small jar roasted red peppers, drained, optional, but I like them!
a bit of butter
splash of balsamic vinegar
Cut larger tomatoes and seed them, cherry tomatoes can be tossed into the roasting pan whole. place tomatoes, peel side up, onion, garlic into roasting pan or onto a large jellyroll pan. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat, salt and pepper a bit.
Roast in 450 degree over for 20-30 minutes or until the skins are soft and the onions look carmelized and garlic is soft. You may stir once or twice if you like during roasting.
Remove from oven and scrape everything from roasting pan into a dutch oven, large pot. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 15-20 minutes or however long you like.
If you have an immersion blender, remove pot from oven, and blend until smooth. If you don't, you'll need to allow the soup to cool a bit and blend in batches in the blender.
Serve with a chunk of fresh mozz and some basil and a handful of croutons. Tasty!
This soup makes a wonderful base for sauces, too. I added a couple cups to cooked, diced chicken breast meat, some asiago cheese and butter and tossed with cooked pasta and almost everyone in the family loved it -- I say almost because I have one kid who still thinks butter-noodles are the best!
Enjoy this easy, delicious, mid-week wonder as we welcome autumn!
(more pics to be added soon!!)