Steve's Tomato-Basil Soup
This tomato basil soup is a terrific, warming soup for the winter months, and also enjoyable in the springtime.
It was inspired by an attempt to replicate the tomato-basil soup from Gordon Biersch, a San Francisco-based microbrewer with restaurants in CA and Seattle."Wow, this was just what I wanted when I was craving tomato basil soup! I had to substitute diced tomatoes and dried basil but it was still fantastic. I added brown sugar as well to give the sweetness a bit of a rustic flavor. I also used a hand emulsifier, which really cuts down on time and dishes you have to do afterwards! I highly recommend a hand blender (I use the kitchenaid) to any soup connoisseur. " - katielekas
Yield: 8 Servings Ready in 45 minutes
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Verified by stevemur
Steve's Tomato-Basil Soup Preparation
In a large stockpot, heat vegetable oil over medium-low heat. Add sliced garlic, finely diced shallots and onion. Simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until onion starts to caramelize.
Add cans of crushed tomatoes; add sugar. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 5-10 minutes. Stir in chicken broth. Remove from heat and let cool a bit. Working in batches, puree the soup mixture in a blender or liquid-tight food processor. (NOTE: Heated liquid expands tremendously when you try to puree it -- only fill it halfway full at most, each time!) Put pureed mixture in a bowl, then rinse the stockpot out and put pureed soup base back in.
OPTIONAL: If you'd like a smooth texture to the soup, you should cool it and strain it at this point, working in batches, with a sieve. (I prefer the more rustic texture of pureed but unstrained soup.)
It can remain in this state (refrigerated) for a few days, until ready to serve.
To serve, bring tomato soup mixture to medium heat, and then stir in cream. (In this way, you are keeping the cream out of the pureeing step -- which might whip it -- and also the heating-to-boiling step -- which might curdle it.)
Top with basil, rolled gently and sliced very thinly (i.e., chiffonade). Pair with a crisp Pinot Grigio or Savignon Blanc, or even a deep red like a Cabernet.
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