Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Roasted Tomato Soup

I make a tomato soup in a variety of ways but this is far and away my favorite. I have already talked about my love for roasted vegetables and tomatoes are no exception. Roasting concentrates the flavor and brings out the natural sweetness in tomatoes making this a perfect recipe for the winter months when tomatoes are not at their best. This soup is fantastic for a lunch or a light dinner on its own or you can pair it with a Messy Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Bacon for the ultimate soup and sandwich lunch or dinner.

Roasted Tomato Soup
recipe courtesy of Williams-Sonoma

3 pounds plum tomatoes, cored and halved
8 fresh thyme sprigs
4 cloves garlic
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
5 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup mascarpone cheese
½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 yellow onion, chopped       
3 cups unsalted chicken stock
4 slices country-style bread, toasted

Preheat oven to 275ºF.

Arrange the tomato halves, cut sides up, on a baking sheet.  Scatter the thyme sprigs and garlic on top of the tomatoes.  Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil.  Roast until the tomatoes have dried slightly and some of the skins have burst, about 2 hours.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, using a rubber spatula, stir together the mascarpone and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses until smooth.  Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Pass the roasted tomatoes through a food mill according the manufacturer’s instructions. 

In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the remaining 2 tablespoons oil.  Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until tender and translucent, 4 to 6 minutes.  Add the pureed tomatoes, stock, and bread and simmer for 5 minutes.  Using a stick blender or blender, puree the soup and season with salt and pepper.  Divide the soup among 6 warmed soup bowls and top each with a dollop of cheese mixture.