This summer, so far I have harvested over 33 lbs of tomatoes from our backyard.
That is a lot of tomatoes! We eat quite a few tomatoes but not enough to make 33 lbs. over four weeks reasonable. So what to do? Make tomato soup, of course.
If you don’t want to can, this stuff freezes really well. That is what I did just based on the fact that I didn’t have time to can when I made this stuff. We’ve already blown through about four of the 8 or 9 pints that I made!
Here’s what you need to make 4-5 pints:
- Approximately 5 lbs. of tomatoes, or what shakes out to 8 cups of tomatoes, cored, seeded and chopped
- 2 Tbsp. Olive oil
- 2 white onions, chopped
- 2-3 carrots, chopped
- 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 2-3 cups of vegetable broth (you can use chicken if you prefer)
- 2 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
Start by heating the olive oil on medium-high in the bottom of a large pot (no saucepans, this is a big recipe). Add the onions when the oil begins to shimmer. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add the tomato paste to the olive oil and onion mixture and stir to get the tomato paste to coat. At this point, you should just set up a chopping station next to the burner. Start with the carrots – add them into the onions as you chop and stir occasionally.
Next, do the carrots – I just add every cup into the pot as soon as it’s chopped. Fair warning: this made a huge mess because of all of the seeding. I tried to seed into a bowl, so later I could strain out the tomato juice from the seeds and use it for bloody marys, or dump it back into the soup.
When you’ve added all of the tomatoes, stir in the stock and the basil and bring to a boil. Salt and pepper the soup as well. Remove from the heat and blend with an immersion blender or a regular blender (if you choose this one, let the soup cool first). Taste to test for salt, and add as much as you need.
Allow to cool and ladle into whatever container you choose to store the soup in.
Serve with a tablespoon or so of cream or pesto (or both) if you’d like to mix things up. You can also add croutons and cheese.
This recipe is adapted from my favorite cookbook of all time, How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman.