Can you believe it’s almost Memorial Day? To me it signifies the first indication of summer. There still may be some chilly days ahead of us and the first real day of summer a month away, but the air starts to change and people lighten up with excitement because summer is so near. I am and have always been a summer person. I love warm weather and bright sunshine. It makes me feel alive and inspired. I love summer produce and walking through vibrant farmer markets. One of my favorite and most-anticipated summer fruit is tomatoes. Like me, they thrive in the summer. Often peaking later in the summer, tomatoes are the ultimate summer treat, and this recipe is an ode to my tomato-love. Straight off the vine is my favorite way to enjoy these juicy, sunshine fruits, but when they are not full in season, I love savoring the sweet and acidic taste of a tomato in a Roasted Tomato Soup. Simple, fresh, and creamy, this soup is one you don’t want to miss. It may just be your go-to summer soup (we all need those, cold and warm days). This a tomato soup is perfect to celebrate the start of tomato season and changing of seasons!
This recipe is inspired by Laura Vitale's Fresh Tomato Soup. The base of this soup is fresh tomatoes. Because we are not in peak tomato season, the best way to engage all of the tomato flavors is by roasting them. The sweetness and juiciness of the tomato will intensify as you cook them in the oven. I like to use roma or plum tomatoes, but you could use any fresh tomatoes you have. I like to roast the tomatoes with some shallots, garlic, olive oil, some herbs and spices, and a little balsamic vinegar. I also add a some sprinkle of sugar just to help caramelize the tomatoes. Like tomatoes, balsamic vinegar is acidic and sweet, so it works beautifully with highlighting all the flavors. This recipe is super simple. Once you’ve roasted the vegetables, let them cool. For an extra smooth soup, remove the tomato skins. They should come off fairly easy and it usually only takes a few minutes for this step. Pop all the tomatoes and roasting juices into a blender and blend away until smooth. That’s it! If you prefer more of a thick, puree-like tomato soup, then leave as is. For a more soup-like consistency, heat over the stove with some vegetable stock or coconut milk for a creamy soup. Serve with croutons for crunch, stir in some nutritional yeast for extra creaminess and cheesiness, or garnish with some fresh herbs. There are so many ways to enjoy this super simple, easy and versatile soup.
On cold days or chilly summer nights, there’s nothing more satisfying than a warm bowl of fresh soup. Using fresh tomatoes will give this soup tons of flavor. Adding a little herbs and the balsamic vinegar help elevate the sweetness and earthiness. This soup is great chilled, so have no fear of a hot soup on a hot day, this will cool you down and it will taste good along the way. Between the fresh tomatoes, herbs, sweet balsamic vinegar, aromatic garlic and tasty shallots, this is the perfect dish for the summer. It’s comforting, slightly sweet, and refreshing. It’s a simple soup with few ingredients and only takes an hour or so to make. And the best part, you can make this year round. Happy eating!
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a roasting pan or baking dish, add the tomatoes, shallots, whole garlic cloves, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, sugar (optional), thyme (or any herbs), chili flakes (optional, adds heat) and salt and pepper. Toss (preferably with your hands) to generously coat everything. Place in oven until the tomatoes are caramelized, about 45 minutes. *Note: roasting time will depend on how big the tomato slices are and your oven. Toss every 15 minutes or so. Remove from the oven and let cool (don’t have to be completely cooled, but cool enough to work with).
Once cooled, carefully peel off the skin of the tomatoes (they should come off fairly easily). This step is optional but it will yield a super creamy soup. Place all the tomatoes (and shallots and garlic) and all the roasting juices into a high-speed blender (or use an immersion blender) and blend until smooth. Pour the soup into a saucepan along with the vegetable stock and warm on the stove, stirring occasionally. Taste for more seasoning. Serve warm or chilled. Store in the fridge or freezer in an airtight container. Enjoy!
makes: about 2-2.5 cups soup
total time: about 1 1/4 hours
What you'll need:
8-10 roma or plum tomatoes or any fresh tomatoes (halved or quartered if large)
2 large whole shallots, peeled
2-3 large whole garlic cloves
2-3 tablespoons olive oil + more as needed
1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar *optional
a few sprigs of thyme or any fresh herb *Note: you can also use dried herbs, like dried thyme, rosemary or oregano
1/4 teaspoon chili flakes *optional
3/4 teaspoon salt + more as needed
1/2 teaspoon black pepper + more as needed
1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth