easy peasy tomato soup…
I never liked tomato soup until I made my own, and it’s so easy!
This recipe is vegan and can be adapted to make a tomatoey base for pastas, pizzas and other soups like minestrone.
The ingredients are basic, you need olive oil, a couple of cans (maybe about 2 – 4 small cans 400gms or there abouts) or a couple of kilograms of fresh tomatoes – you’ll need to skin them (perhaps by dropping them into a large pot of rapidly boiling water to loosen the skin) a half or cup or so of tomato paste (but this works ok without it) and vegetable stock. You can use garlic, onions and spices, I like to use garlic and some cumin.
I add red lentils to this (along with a slash of molasses and some salt) and use it as a base for pasta sauces, soups, pizzas. If you blend it all up it’s a great tomatoey lentiley paste/sauce if you prefer a smooth texture, or have people who are scared of lentils.
Sometimes it’s more practical for me to start these meals at lunch or earlier if I’m out for the day. I just chop all the garlic (or here I’ve left them whole as we are getting to the smaller bulbs now..) and drop them in to a pot which has some olive oil (enough to generously cover the bottom of the pot). If you are leaving this for the day or even and hour, put a lid on it!
When the time comes to prepare you’ll swoon over the deliciousness of the garlic as the infused flavours waft out when you lift the lid… I added my spices, about a teaspoon of each? As much as I can grab in a few fingers, cumin seed and red mustard seed. I like to cook the garlic slowly, so it sweats and the spices eventually start to sizzle.
All the while get some water boiling for your stock, if that’s how yours comes, I use a powdered stock and tend to add it to taste, maybe about 4 cups goes into this soup. Pour in to the garlic and spices your tomato paste, stir it through, add your canned or fresh, skinned and chopped tomato mix, I like to heat it through and reduce it a bit.
But you don’t have to, you can just put it all into the big pot with your stock, warm it through, cook for a few minutes, gently stirring while you find some pretty bowls to serve it in, and pull out the fresh baked bread…
Taste it and maybe season with a little salt, sprinkle on some fresh parsley or other fresh herbs, maybe some cracked pepper…
Oh and this freezes really well, so fill your freezer and forget about the tinned stuff!