Recipe of the Week, June 16:Tomato Soup
Use fresh tomatoes to make a luscious creamy tomato soup. It's quite easy to make and much more tasty than canned cream of tomato soup. If you are lucky enough to grow your own tomatoes or have a good farmer's market nearby, you can easily freeze tomatoes without the fuss of canning, and they will also taste fresher than canned. Simply wash, pat dry, place whole tomatoes in a freezer zip-top bag, suck out the air with a straw, seal, and freeze. When you thaw them, the skins will slip right off, and they are ready to go.
3 Tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
4 pounds tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into pieces
2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
2 whole cloves
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup half & half or whipping cream (optional)
Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and toss to coat. Stir over medium heat until the onion is tender. Sprinkle on the flour and continue stirring over medium heat until the mixture foams. Stir in the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
Measure out 3/4 cup of the tomato pieces and set aside. Add the remaining tomato pieces to the boiling mixture. Stir in the brown sugar and cloves. Reduce the heat and cook, uncovered, at the gentle bubble for 30 minutes.
Transfer to a food mill and force through. Return to the saucepan and stir in the reserved tomato pieces, or use an immersion blender or regular blender. Blend in the salt, pepper, and cream-if using. Place soup over medium heat and warm gently, but do not boil.
Yield: 6 servings
Notes: This recipe easily doubles. It's good with the cream or without. You can add bay leaves or basil or oregano if you like.
Do you like tomato soup? Creamy or not?