Monday, October 15, 2012

Roasted Creamy Tomato Soup

With all the fresh heirloom tomatoes coming out of my garden, I decided to make my own tomato soup. This recipe made 14 1/2 pints, which I canned in my pressure canner. Here is what I did...

Roasted Creamy Tomato Soup ©
Roasted Creamy Tomato Soup

12 1/2 lbs mixed tomatoes (I used heirlooms in yellow, purple, green, red, and brown, along with Roma tomatoes)
6 large sweet onions
2 bulbs garlic
1/4 cup + 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup cream sherry
3 quarts chicken stock
3 tablespoons agave syrup (or other sweetener), OPTIONAL
Extra virgin olive oil
2 bay leaves
1/2-1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Halve or quarter tomatoes, place on sheet pans, drizzle with a little olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and roast in oven until soft and lightly caramelized (around 30 minutes). Because this is a bigger batch, I used 5 sheet trays. This step can be done ahead of time. I spread this out over a couple of days, as my tomatoes ripened.
Cut onions in half and slice. I used a food processor to make quick work of this! In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil, then add onions. Immediately add salt and cook over low/medium heat until unions are soft and caramelized. Add cream sherry and 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar to the pan and cook an additional 5 minutes. This step can also be done ahead of time.
Slice off tops of garlic bulbs to expose the cloves. Place in a small pan, drizzle with olive oil, and roast in a 425 degree oven until golden brown and caramelized, about 30 minutes. Allow to cool, then squeeze out the cloves. (Once again, this step can be done ahead of time!)
In a large stockpot, combine roasted tomatoes, caramelized onions, and roasted garlic. Add chicken stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Add bay leaves, sweet and smoked paprika, and nutmeg. Simmer over medium-low heat for about 45 minutes. Remove bay leaves. Using a food processor, puree soup in batches. Strain through a coarse strainer to remove seeds and tough pieces of skin. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup of vinegar and cook for 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning...I added the agave just to enhance the tomatoes sweetness, but it is to your taste!  Season with salt and pepper.
Ladle into hot, sterilized pint jars (I like the look of wide-mouth stout pint jars), clean rims, and apply sterilized caps. Follow your manufacturers instructions for your pressure canner. Process at 11 lbs pressure, 60 minutes for pints, 70 minutes for quarts.

When you are ready to open up a jar, just bring to a boil in a saucepan, reduce heat, and add cream or milk to taste. Freshly sliced basil sprinkled on top would be delicious!
I hope I remembered everything, but you can adjust the flavors according to your taste.