Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Many Faces of Soup

Oh, the many possibilities of soup. It's like a little package of warmth, as if the sun packaged itself up into a little bowl and gave you a hug. This is especially a big deal for Missourians. It seems that every year the sun dislikes coming our way and leaves us without sunshine for sometimes months at a time. After only 15 years here, I dread winter and the cold, bitter, darkness it brings. But Missouri's lack of time with the sun in the winter is another matter. We are talking about soup. Soup is a great family friendly and time friendly dish. While it is simmering away on the stove you can start on the dishes, or sit back and relax as you watch your kids or husband do the dishes. (What? That doesn't happen? Well it was a nice thought.)
Anyways, the tomato plants that we have at my house are a little confused. They just started blooming a few weeks ago and are now in full production. We picked about 30 vine ripened tomatoes of the vine yesterday. The whole thing seemed odd to me. I had to wear a coat to pick tomatoes… Oh well. I am fine with receiving fresh juicy tomatoes at this time of year. It's all fine by me! So what can a girl do with all of these tomatoes, you ask? Why, make tomato soup of course!

Fresh Creamy Tomato Soup
3 TBS of Butter or EVOO (I use a half of each)
2 Large Onions, diced
3-4 Cloves of Garlic, diced
2 medium Carrots, diced
1/4 tsp of Crushed rep pepper flakes (more or less if you like)
1 tsp of salt
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
16-17 Fresh medium tomatoes
2 TBS of Tomato Paste
1 TBS of Sugar
1 tsp of dried Parsley
1 1/2 tsp of dried Basil
2 Bay leaves
1/4 tsp of dried Oregano
1/2 tsp of dried Sage
1/2 tsp of Rosemary
1 cp. of Milk
1/3 cup (or more) of grated parmesean cheese (optional)


In a large pot, heat the 3 TBS of oil over medium high heat. Add the onions, garlic, carrots and crushed red pepper flakes. Saute over medium-medium high heat for fifteen minutes. Next, add the the diced tomatoes, tomato paste and sugar. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Then add the herbs and milk, recover with the lid and cook for another 25 minutes over medium heat. (Note: Your taste buds may be more sensitive to certain flavors or herbs. Don't be afraid to taste it and add more or less than called for in the recipe. Don't worry, the kitchen police won't give you a ticket for test tasting the soup.) Next is blending the soup. My personal method of choice is the immersion blender. Now you could of course use a food processor or a food mill (which is great because then you don’t have the tomato peel in the soup), but with these methods it requires you to move the soup. If you do use a method which requires transportation of the soup, just be careful and use common sense. (Don’t forget that the soup IS hot people!) Return back to the heat and let simmer over low until ready to serve. (Note: The longer you let it simmer away the more the flavors will mingle together.) Right before serving stir in parmesan cheese, which is optional but for my taste buds, it's a must. Stir with a little extra shredding of parmesan on top and a nice chunk of warm bread. Enjoy!


  1. Yummy, this sounds wonderful! We cannot wait to try it! Andrea---you are an inspiration and if we had a daughter-- I would have wanted her have been just like you!!! Tanya & Gene

  2. Thanks! You guys are great neighbors, and i am glad to have gotten to know you guys! Aww, Thanks!