Brightening Your Dinner

I know I'm not the only one who associates a good bowl of tomato soup with a crisp on the outside, gooey on the inside grilled cheese sandwich. The combination is a wonderful blend of tangy and creamy and is just what the doctor ordered on a cold winter's day. And, as winter seems to continue dragging on, the brightness of a colorful bowl of tomato soup is downright cheerful:

This soup is my favorite tomato soup. In addition to being packed with roasted tomatoes and garlic, it gets a late addition of cream to transform it into a traditional bisque. If you have a dairy allergy, are vegan, or prefer a non-dairy soup, just skip that step - the soup will still be amazing. You can, by the way, split the making of this soup into two steps that can be completed on different days. Simple roast and puree the vegetables one day and make them into soup the following one. This can be handy when you want to be able to put together your soup in about 30 minutes on the day you plan to serve it.

As mentioned above, I love serving this soup with a grilled cheese sandwich. That said, other sandwich options also pair nicely with it and even a nice salad could work. But really, until all the snow is gone, I recommend a good grilled cheese sandwich to make this meal complete!

Roasted Garlic Tomato Bisque

  • 2 pounds roma tomatoes, halved
  • 8 oz. cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 head of garlic, top cut open
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup cream (optional)
  • Additional salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 425° F.

Place the tomatoes and garlic on a baking sheet. Evenly distribute the olive oil and one teaspoon of the salt over the vegetables. Place them in the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Remove the tomatoes and allow them to cool for 10 minutes.

Remove the garlic cloves from their peel by squeezing each garlic clove until it pops out. Discard the peels.

Place tomatoes and garlic in a food processor with the Italian seasoning and puree until the mixture is smooth. Add the pureed tomato mixture to a large saucepan. Add the remaining teaspoon salt and vegetable stock. Simmer gently for 20 minutes.

Add the cream and any additional seasonings desired. Stir to combine and heat through before serving. To make it dairy free/vegan, omit the cream.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour

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