Tuscan Tomato Soup

finished soup

My Tuscan Tomato Soup is made with a combination of fresh Roma tomatoes coupled with high quality canned Roma tomatoes. I finish the soup with the addition of fresh basil and Italian parsley! I make a homemade pesto with fresh basil and top toasted baguette slices with the mixture. The pesto crouton tops the finished soup for a great winter warm-up!


Ingredients

Soup

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • (basil scented if possible)
  • 2 shallots, peeled and chopped
  • (or 1 small red onion, peeled and chopped)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 pound of fresh Roma tomatoes,
  • coarsely chopped
  • one 28-ounce can of Roma tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • salt and white pepper to taste
  • French bread baguette slices
  • olive oil to brush on slices

Pesto

  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pine nuts or pecans
  • 2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
  • a pinch of salt & pepper

To finish the croutons

  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (for top of croutons)
  • finely sliced green onion garnish (optional)

Instructions

To make the soupchopped shallots

Peel the shallots (or red onion) and finely chop.  Place the olive oil in a large pot (we use oil from the Oilerie located in Fish Creek – they have a basil scented olive oil which works great for this soup! Click here for more information on The Oilerie in Fish Creek.

Add the shallots and chopped garlic. Stir, on medium heat, until shallots become translucent but not brown.shallots with oil

Add the tomatoes, with juice, into the soup. Use the back of your spoon to break the tomatoes up if they are whole.
Look for a nice Italian style canned plum tomato.

Add the chopped fresh tomatoes.  adding stockAdd the vegetable or chicken stock. Simmer the soup on a low heat for 30 minutes.

Puree the soup. To do this, you can use an immersion blender (pictured at right) which goes directly into the soup.

Alternately, you can puree the soup in batches in a food processor. Be careful not to overfill your food processor bowl. I would recommend pureeing the soup in batches.

Try to keep a few pieces of tomatoes in the soup to give the finished product some texture.basil 3

Slice the basil into a “chiffinode” to add to the soup.  To do this, place basil leaves one on top of each other.
Fold the basil “packet” in half.   Take a chef’s knife and slice across the packet to make thin slices of basil.
Continue slicing remaining basil in this manner.

To make the pesto and serve

When ready to serve, add the fresh basil and Italian parsley.    Season if needed with salt and white pepper.
If making ahead, do not add the fresh herbs until ready to serve.

add basil to soup

Make a basil pesto by placing the basil, nuts,  and salt/pepper in a food processor.  Pulse to combine.  Add just
enough olive oil to make a thick pesto.   Place the pesto on a toasted baguette slice and top with a little Parmesan cheese.
Place under a broiler to melt.

Ladle the hsoup1croutonot soup into soup bowls. Top with a basil pesto crouton.

If desired, garnish with finely julienne green onion that has been placed in cold water and ice for 3 to 4 hours.
This will make the green onion “curl” for garnishing.

 

 

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