Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup

Since the cool weather finally settled in Dallas, I have found myself making more and more soups for dinner. Part of it is the way soup really warms you up on cold, windy days. Another reason is that Robert and I have both suffered bouts of head colds recently, and nothing helps me feel better when I'm sick than a nice hot bowl of soup.

This soup reminds me a lot of the tomato basil soup served in La Madeline, but richer as the result of the roasted garlic. I serve this soup with parmesan toasts, a grown up replacement for the grilled cheese sandwiches that paired with tomato soup growing up. This soup takes some time, but it's really simple to put together which makes it great for even weeknight dinners.

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Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup

1 head of garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 large carrot, diced
1 celery rib, diced
1/4 large yellow onion, diced
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 teaspoon sugar
2 cups half and half
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
loaf of french bread

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cut off the top third of the head of garlic.
 Drizzle with a little olive oil,
 and wrap up in foil. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a pot
 and add the carrots,
 and celery.
 Sweat the vegetables for 15 minutes.
Add the crushed tomatoes,
 and sugar. Stir to combine, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
When the garlic is done, remove from the oven and let cool. The garlic should be soft and slightly brown.
 Squeeze the garlic out of the paper skin
 and add to the pot
 along with a 1/4 cup of the parmesan cheese.
Recover and simmer for 15 more minutes.

Carefully transfer the soup to a blender and puree until smooth.
 Pour back in the pot and add the half and half.
 Stir to combine and return to a boil.
To make the parmesan toasts, preheat the broiler.
Brush bread slices with olive oil
and toast for about 3-5 minutes, or until browned.
 Flip the sliced over and brush with a little more olive oil
 and sprinkle with the remaining parmesan cheese.
 Return to the oven and toast for another 2-3 minutes until the bread is browned and the cheese melted.
Serve with a bowl of soup for a delicious meal on a cold winter night.
Source: Adapted from the Homesick Texan

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