Thursday, September 19, 2013

Fresh Tomato and Oregano Soup

Searching for a interesting tomato soup recipe, I came across this Chunky Fresh Tomato Oregano Soup on the site Rock Recipes, a food blog out of Newfoundland, Canada. I like this soup for its simplicity and bold, fresh tomato flavors. It comes together in less than an hour with pretty minimal effort.

I changed a couple things from the original recipe: I omitted the vegetable broth and used water, since I did not want to dilute the pure tomato flavor. Yes there is oregano here, but that only enhances the tomato taste. I also cut back on the olive oil and butter, which was original 3 tablespoons each.

Fresh Tomato and Oregano Soup
Adapted from Chunky Fresh Tomato Oregano Soup, Rock Recipes

Makes about 4 servings

1 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 1/2 to 3 lbs. fresh tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup chopped fresh oregano leaves
3 bay leaves
1 tsp ground fennel seeds
1/2 tsp crushed red chili pepper flakes
3 cups water
Pinch of brown sugar
Parmesan toast rounds (optional garnish, recipe below)

1. Combine butter, olive oil and onion in a Dutch oven or other large soup pot over medium heat. Cook until the onions soften, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 2 to 3 minutes until fragrant. Onions should be very soft but not brown (reduce heat if needed to prevent browning).

2. Add the remaining ingredients through brown sugar, increase heat to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes.

3. Remove the bay leaves. Pulse an immersion blender through the soup a few times to make it thicker, but do not process to a puree (the soup should be chunky). Serve garnished with a sprinkle of fresh oregano leaves and a parmesan toast round (recipe below).

Parmesan Toast Rounds

4 slices of baguette, about 1/2-inch thick
Olive oil
Grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
Hungarian paprika

Preheat oven broiler. Lightly brush baguette slices with olive oil. Transfer to a baking sheet and broil until lightly browned (watch carefully, they will burn fast). Turn bread slices over to toast the other side. Remove from oven and place a heaping spoonful of parmesan on each toasted slice. Sprinkle with paprika. Return to broiler to melt cheese (again, watch carefully to prevent the cheese from burning). Remove from oven

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