Sunday, May 3, 2009

Recipe: Tomato Soup with Pasta and Basil

I bought a new pasta recipe book last night (because pretty much my favorite food in the world is pasta) and immediately found a recipe that I wanted to try right away. This weekend's rainy weather helped to put me in a soup and pasta sort of mood!


3 large, very ripe tomatoes
2 Tbs olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 small red pepper, finely chopped
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock (I used vegetable)
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 tsp. sugar
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves (whole)
1 cup shell or macaroni pasta

Score a cross in the top of each tomato. Plunge into boiling water for 1-2 minutes, then into cold water. Peel each tomato and remove the seeds. Roughly chop the tomatoes.

Heat olive oil in a large, heavy bottomed pan and cook onion, garlic and red pepper until soft. Add chopped tomato and cook 10 more minutes. Add stock, tomato paste, sugar and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Remove from heat and add basil leaves. Allow to cool slightly before processing the mixture, in batches, in a food processor or blender, until smooth. Return soup to pan and gently re-heat.

While the soup is re-heating (or continuing to heat since it didn't totally cool off in the first place), boil pasta. Drain pasta and add to the soup. Heat through. Garnish with basil if desired.

*Since this is the first time I've made this soup it took me over an hour. I have a feeling that when I do it again it will go much faster. I haven't tried it but it's likely that this soup would also freeze well.


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