Thursday, February 24, 2011

I'm longing for Springtime!


Theresa's Double-Tomato Soup
Photo: Howard L. Puckett;
Styling: Lydia Degaris-Pursell



I'm trying to redeem myself from the glutonous display of one week ago. (How am I doing so far?) Last night I wasn't sure what I would cook today, but the weather has made the decision for me. I am looking out of my kitchen window at 4 inches of snow. On the plains of Kansas this probably isn't a big deal, but when you're surrounded by steep hills....

Anyhow, this recipe takes advantage of what I have in the pantry. And, as an added bonus, it is healthy and comforting on a snowy winter day. (I am SO over Winter and ready for Spring).

Theresa Larsen, Redlands, CA was a Cooking Light finalist in the category "Side Dishes and Side Salads" and stated -- "I omitted the heavy cream that is usually found in tomato soups in order to make this recipe lighter. I don't miss it because pureeing creates a nice, creamy texture." Her recipe was published in the March 2007 issue of Cooking Light magazine.

Ingredients

  • 1  tablespoon  butter
  • 1  cup  chopped onion (1 medium)
  • 3/4  cup  shredded carrot
  • 1  tablespoon  minced garlic
  • 1  tablespoon  minced shallots
  • 1  teaspoon  sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8  teaspoon  salt
  • 10  large basil leaves, divided
  • 3  drained sun-dried tomato halves, packed in oil with herbs (such as California Sun Dry brand)
  • 2  (14.5-ounce) cans organic diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1  (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

Preparation

Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped onion, shredded carrot, garlic, and shallots to pan, and cook for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring frequently. Add sugar, pepper, salt, and 4 basil leaves, and cook 5 minutes. Add sun-dried tomatoes, diced tomatoes, and broth, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour. Remove from heat. Place half of soup in blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining soup. Divide soup evenly among 6 bowls. Garnish each serving with 1 basil leaf.

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