Things are slowly getting back to normal for the Apt. 1E crowd although I am still working from home due to ‘severe electrical damage’ to our office building. Seeing the devastation that others in the area have experienced, and continue to experience, makes me thankful though. And it reminds me to take advantage of the extra quality time with Newt (even though he sleeps in the closet all day).
In light of last week’s storm, tomorrow’s election, and the pending Nor’easter off the East Coast, I am anticipating that many people will need some comfort this week. That’s where this recipe comes in. Your basic tomato soup kicked up a notch but still easy enough that comfort is only a short jaunt-in-the-kitchen away.
Speaking of Nor’easters - using an apostrophe in the middle of a word is a very under-utilized tool. A “Nor’easter” sounds a lot better than a “Northeaster.” Therefore, I present to you an alternatively named, Roasted T’mato and Bas’l Soup.
Roasted Tomato and Basil Soup
Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod
2 ½ pounds Roma tomatoes
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 medium onion
4 cloves of garlic, minced
Red Pepper flakes
1 cup fresh basil, chopped
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
4 cups chicken broth
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Slice your tomatoes lengthwise and arrange, cut-side up, on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour to desired roasted-ness.
Chop your onion. In a large stockpot, heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender. Stir in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for about 2-3 minutes. Add the canned tomatoes, fresh basil and broth to the stockpot. Stir in the oven-roasted tomatoes. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook for about 30 minutes.
At this point you can use either a food processor (and work in batches – but be careful, it will be hot!) or use an immersion blender (as I did) and puree the soup until slightly smooth (a few chunky tomatoes aren’t a bad thing in this soup).