Roasted Tomato Soup + Potatoes

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This time of year I find myself incredibly sick of all things winter. Especially winter food. Especially since that golden ball in the sky has been making a pretty regular appearance. If I have to eat one more sweet potato or stomach one more type of squash, I just know I’ll lose my mind. I want bright colors and flavors, fresh veggies and greens. And despite the warm days we’ve been having and the green grass outside my windows, it’s still far too early for the delights of spring produce. So…what to do? Buy some out of season Organic tomatoes and roast them til they taste like summer.

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Being in the food industry, I get asked pretty regularly what my favorite cookbook is. And I always feel a bit sheepish answering the question, feeling like people assume it’s one of the greats. Or at least written by some famous chef. I always hesitate when I answer, because in reality, my two favorite cookbooks are simply the ones that inspire me the most. The ones I actually cook from the most and find myself turning to time and time again for inspiration. And they never let me down.

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I’ve always hated the canned tomato soup, feeling like it looked more like milky ketchup than a hearty soup, so when I watched Sophie roast a pan full of juicy tomatoes for the first time, I knew I had to try it her way. At the end of the episode, she sits down and with great glee, dips a huge forkful of her twice baked potato in the soup. That was it. I was sold. Anytime I’m feeling like winter might get the best of me, I make this combo, and suddenly the promise of summer feels fresh again and my patience is restored.

The best part about this soup, for me, is the delightful creamy texture without the inclusion of any dairy. That means I can load up my potatoes with as much cheese as I’d like to compensate. Bon apetit!

Roasted Tomato Soup + Potatoes
Author: Adapted from Sophie Dahl
Ingredients
  • For the potatoes:
  • 4 russet potatoes
  • knob of butter
  • 2 tbsp crème fraîche (or sour cream)
  • small bunch fresh chives, finely chopped
  • 7oz chèvre
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • For the soup:
  • 4½lbs Organic tomatoes on the vine
  • 1 garlic bulb, cut in half horizontally
  • 2 large red onions, peeled, quartered
  • few sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp cane sugar
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • few drops Worcestershire sauce
  • few drops balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Puncture (with a fork) and bake the potatoes directly on the wire rack of the oven for 1½ -1¾hours, or until tender.
For the soup:
  1. Meanwhile, for the soup, place the tomatoes, garlic, onions and thyme into a large roasting pan and season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with the oil, and roast in the oven for 40-50 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Squeeze the garlic cloves out, and discard the skin. Add the roasted tomatoes and onions into a blender along with the mashed garlic, and pulse until smooth (If the soup is too thick, pour into a large saucepan and loosen the mixture with either vegetable stock or water).
  3. Add a little Worcestershire sauce or balsamic vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.
For the potatoes:
  1. Remove the potatoes from the oven and using a cloth to hold the hot potato, cut each one in half and scoop out the insides into a bowl.
  2. Mix in the butter, crème fraîche (sour cream), chives and chèvre and stir in the egg.
  3. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and spoon the potato mixture back into the skins. Place onto a baking tray in the oven for a further 15-20 minutes, or until golden-brown and crisp on top.
  4. Dip potato in soup and enjoy!

 

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