I know that I was just blathering about how meager our tomato crop has been this year and how sad that made me that I couldn’t savor fresh, juicy tomatoes. You would think that would mean that I saved each ripe tomato we did manage to find to enjoy with as little cooking or fuss as possible. After all, who wouldn’t want to eat these babies like they’re apples:
I would have, but stronger forces were at work here– our new gas range. Stainless steel, five burners, and a griddle attachment that needed to be tested. I saw griddle, I thought grilled cheese sandwiches. I thought grilled cheese sandwiches and knew that those tomatoes were
doomed destined to be cooked into a delicious soup.
For this tomato soup, I slow roasted the tomatoes in the oven, sprinkling them with fennel seeds, ground coriander, and red pepper flakes. The tomato flavors concentrated and the colors deepened. I added the tomatoes to a sautéed mix of grated carrots, and chopped onion, celery, and garlic, then let everything simmer together in vegetable stock. The tiniest splash of cream turned the soup into a rich orange color and gave a lovely silky feel to each spoonful. The joy of making my grilled cheese sandwich right along side of my soup as it simmered on the stove made the sacrifice of enjoying a raw tomato so worth it.
- 2 pounds ripe tomatoes
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 medium carrots, grated
- 2 large celery stalks, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 1.5 teaspoons)
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Slice tomatoes and place them on a foil lined baking sheet. Drizzle tomatoes with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper, the fennel seeds, ground coriander, and red pepper flakes. Bake for 3 hours or until tomatoes are shriveled at the edges. Remove from oven and set aside.
In a large soup pot, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the grated carrot, celery, onion, and garlic. Saute until onion softens, about 8-10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and vegetable stock. Simmer for 20 minutes then blend until smooth using an immersion blender (or in 2 cup batches in a regular blender, holding down the lid tightly with a kitchen towel as the heat will make the liquid expand and can push off the lid if you over fill it.) Stir in the cream and adjust seasonings to taste.
CSA Count: 3
Tomatoes, carrots, onion
Garden Count: 1