Roasted Tomato Soup is easy enough for every day, and elegant enough for your special dinner party. In addition, it’s just as delicious cold as it is hot. One of the keys to this amazing soup is the roasting of the canned tomatoes. This concentrates the flavors. Another key is processing the soup in a blender to ensure that it’s perfectly smooth and creamy.
Ingredients for Roasted Tomato Soup:
I used the following ingredients: Canned whole tomatoes, brown sugar, onions, celery, garlic, flour, chicken broth, chicken base, tomato paste, dried basil, dried oregano, dried thyme, medium dry sherry, heavy cream, salt, and freshly ground black pepper.
Roasting the Tomatoes:
The most time-consuming part of making this soup is getting the tomatoes ready for roasting. First, I drained the tomatoes but reserved the juices. Then, I removed any extraneous skin and seeds. The easiest way that I know to remove the seeds is to break open the tomatoes and rinse them under running water.
After I rinsed the tomatoes, I placed them on paper towels, and patted them dry with additional paper towels. The reason that I dried the tomatoes was that the roasting does not begin until the liquid has been evaporated. Therefore, the more liquid that is removed before roasting, the quicker the process. Next, I spread the tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with non-stick aluminum foil. After that, I sprinkled them with some brown sugar to enhance the roasting. I popped the tomatoes into a preheated 450° F oven for about 30 minutes until the liquid had evaporated and they began to color.
Making the Roasted Tomato Soup:
While the tomatoes were roasting, I cooked the onion and celery in a Dutch oven for about 10 minutes. Then, I added the minced garlic and cooked the vegetables for about 30 seconds more. To aid in thickening the soup, I added some flour to the vegetables, stirred to combine, and cooked the mixture for another minute or so.
Next, I added the chicken broth, reserved juices from the tomatoes, chicken base and tomato paste.
After everything was well combined, I added the basil, oregano and thyme. Then, I brought the mixture to a boil, reduced the heat to low and cooked the soup covered for about 30 minutes.
At this point, I had removed the tomatoes from the oven and let them cool a bit. Then, I added them to the soup, covered the pan, and let the mixture cook for another 30 minutes.
After I let the mixture cool slightly, pureéd the soup in a blender in batches. Next, I returned puréed mixture to the Dutch oven. Finally, I added the sherry and heavy cream.
I gave the soup a good stir to ensure that everything was well combined. Then, I tasted it to see whether I needed to add any salt or pepper. I thought that it was perfectly seasoned, so time for dinner! I served the soup with Mardi Gras Salad, and a freshly baked baguette. Yum!
- 2 (28 ounce) cans whole tomatoes, drained with juice reserved (See Note 1)
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 cups chopped onion (1 large)
- 1 cup chopped celery (about 4 stalks)
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 3/4 cups chicken broth (See Note 2)
- 1 Tablespoons chicken base
- 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 Tablespoons medium dry sherry (See Note 3)
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (See Note 4)
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with non-stick aluminum foil.
Drain tomatoes, reserving the juice. Seed tomatoes, pat dry with paper towels and spread in a single layer on the foil. Sprinkle evenly with the brown sugar. Bake until all liquid has evaporated and the tomatoes begin to color, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven; let the tomatoes cool slightly. (See Note 5)
Cook onion and celery in a large Dutch oven until tender, about 10 minutes. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds, or until garlic is fragrant. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly until thoroughly combined. Gradually add the chicken broth, reserved tomato juice, chicken base and tomato paste. Whisk to combine. Add basil, oregano and thyme. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low, and cook covered for 30 minutes. (See Note 6)
- Add tomatoes; cook covered for 30 additional minutes. Cool mixture slightly.
Working in batches, pureé the soup. Return to Dutch oven. Add the sherry and whipping cream, stirring to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Yield: 6 servings.
- (Note 1) I prefer to use no-salt canned tomatoes, and usually end up with about 2 3/4 to 3 cups of reserved juice.
- (Note 2) I use low sodium chicken broth.
- (Note 3) Typically, I use either Dry Sack Sherry or Tio Pepe.
- (Note 4) Chicken Base tends to be quite salty. Therefore, before adding any additional salt, carefully taste the soup. I usually add about 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper.
- (Note 5) I'm often asked whether it is really necessary to remove the tomato seeds. To be honest, I've never made the soup without taking the extra step of removing the seeds. However, I suspect that they would impact the texture of the soup given that they would likely remain whole even after soup is pureéd. On another note, because of the added brown sugar, the tomatoes generally end up with some burned bits after being in the oven for 30 minutes. While the burned bits do not impact the taste of the soup, I remove them because they impact the appearance of the soup.
- (Note 6) The actual cooking of the soup can start while the tomatoes are roasting in the oven.