We are rounding out the end the of summer, headed to cooler weather. Tomato soup kind of straddles both worlds...the taste of summer and the temperature of cozy food you want in the fall. AND I had a bucket full of really ready tomatoes, so soup (or salsa or sauce) is the best way to get them used because I can't eat that many tomatoes on my own...I mean, I would try, but yeah. So this soup is really easy. You roast everything in a Dutch oven or on baking sheets, then blend it up with some coconut milk, cream and cheese. You can give it extra cream at the end and turn it into a bisque, or leave as-is. Homemade croutons on top-- SO good.
"If you can't find yellow tomatoes, (be sure to check farmer's markets and stands) use heirlooms or romas. Your soup will still be fab!"
Notes: 3 lbs. yellow tomatoes, 1 lb. red tomatoes, 1 white onion, 2-3 large garlic cloves, 2 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. pepper, 1/2 can coconut milk, 1/4 tsp. baking soda, 1/4 tsp. sugar, 1/4 cup heavy cream, 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, fresh herbs: small bunch of parsley, 2 sprigs of thyme, 6-8 basil leaves. For the croutons: a few slices of multi-grain bread-cubed, 2 tbsp. butter, 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese.
Serves 4-6 well.
1. Preheat oven to 400*.
2. Roughly chop tomatoes and onion, tip into a Dutch oven or onto a baking sheet. Add the garlic cloves (un-peeled), olive oil, salt, pepper, and fresh herbs. Cook uncovered for 30 minutes, cool slightly.
3. Remove and discard the thyme and basil, but leave the parsley. Squeeze the garlic out of each clove's skin. Spoon the everything into a blender and blend until smooth. Add the coconut milk, cream, baking soda and sugar. Blend again to combine.
4. Pour soup back into the Dutch oven or a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add cheese and stir to melt.
5. Make the croutons: heat the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the cubes of bread and cook until toasted on both sides, about 7 minutes. Sprinkle over the Parmesan and remove from heat. Serve on top of the soup.
Tip: To make a dairy-free version, up the coconut milk to 1 can, and instead of the cheese, add 1 tbsp. nutritional yeast. For gluten-free make the croutons using GF bread- still great!