First of all let us wish you a Happy New Year! As always some people have had a great year and others not so good. But its a New Year and a new start so I’m hoping it will be a great one for all.
It’s a cold start to the New Year here in Northumberland so what better than a large pan of home-made soup to warm you through after a brisk walk outdoors. We ate this with a loaf of Olive Bread, sadly not home-made as that would have been divine, but this was okay and went really well with the soup. Tomato soup just seemed like the ‘right’ thing to start the year off and we’re a bit partial to Tomato soup, here is another one we made last year.
As a child I remember plain and rather boring lentil soup, a variation made using a ham hock and then tinned soups which I generally hated. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to fully forget the taste of Heinz Oxtail soup, ugh, I loathed everything about it, the only one I ever felt able to eat was the cream of tomato one. However once you’ve made your own there is no going back. Soup is one of the fastest meals you can make from fresh ingredients and its so, so much better than anything processed. Be great for a winter picnic too!
Some key ingredients to a good tomato soup. © Sue Todd Photography 2016
- 2 lbs of tomatoes
- 2 large red bell peppers
- 3 cloves of garlic
- salt & pepper to season
- 1 pint of vegetable stock
- 1 onion
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil and a splash for the peppers
- 1 handful of fresh basil
- Parmesan cheese grated to serve
- Bread to serve with the soup
Roasted Pepper and Tomato Soup. A lovely winter warming soup © Sue Todd Photography 2016
Finely chop the onion and garlic. Using a deep heavy based pan, gently fry the onion and garlic in the oil until they are transparent.
Meanwhile cut and de seed the peppers, put them on an oven tray and splash with olive oil. Put the peppers in the oven to roast until the skins have changed colour and they seem cooked. Ours went in the roasting oven of the AGA, for somewhere between 10 and 20 minutes.
Roughly chop the tomatoes, add them to the pan containing the onion and garlic and fry for five minutes.
Add the stock, bring the pan to the boil and simmer for a further 10 minutes.
When the peppers are ready, roughly chop them and add them to the pan with the tomatoes, onion and garlic.
Retaining some small sprigs of basil for garnish, chop the rest of the basil and add that to the pan as well. Cook for a further 10 minutes.
Season to taste.
Remove from the heat and blend. You can use either a blender/food processor or a hand-held blender – we use a hand blender and make sure we still keep some texture rather than having it entirely smooth, but do what you prefer.
Return the soup to the heat to warm through. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed before serving.
Roasted Pepper and Tomato Soup © Sue Todd 2016
Dish the soup up in warmed bowls with a sprig of fresh basil in the middle accompanied by grated fresh Parmesan and some fresh bread.