My fall has been blessed with a bountiful harvest of tomatoes. Last year, I had jalapeno peppers coming out my ears and ventured into the world of Candied Jalapenos. This year I am searching out canning and preserving recipes for tomatoes. I have canned salsa, spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, plain sauce, and juice. Quarts, pints, and half-pint jars filled with liquids in various shades of red line my basement pantry shelves. And now, I am adding more with some M'm! M'm! Good! Tomato Soup.
Hubs isn't a fan of tomato soup, but I love a grilled cheese sandwich dipped into a steaming bowl of tomatoey goodness. Those commercials with the snowmen defrosting into little kids are spot on. Nothing warms you more completely from the inside out than a warm bowl of soup. It will be so nice this winter when I can toast up some bread and melty cheese On My Plate and fill my bowl with M'm! M'M! Good! Tomato Soup.
10-12 pounds tomatoes, chopped (I just chopped enough to fill my 7 1/4 quart dutch oven...seeds, skins and all.)
2 yellow onions, chopped
1 head garlic, minced
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
1-2 tablespoons kosher salt
fresh cracked black pepper
2-4 tablespoons sugar (optional)
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup flour
plus 3 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped finely
Chop tomatoes and place in a large, heavy pot over medium heat.
Add the onions, garlic, and 1/2 cup of chopped fresh basil.
Season with salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until tomatoes have cooked down and flesh has released from the skins.
Remove from heat.
Process tomatoes through a food mill/cone colander with pestle/sieve/or similar utensil to strain the seeds and skin.
Return pulpy juice to heavy pot and bring to a simmer.
Add sugar, if desired.
With mixer, cream together the room temperature butter and the flour.
With mixer running, slowly add a ladle of warm tomato juice to the flour mixture.
Repeat with 4 or 5 more ladles of soup until the flour mixture is warm and thoroughly combined with a good portion of the juice.
Add the warm flour mixture to the pot of simmering juice, stirring constantly to combine.
Add the 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil.
Ladle into prepared jars (I use pints) and secure lids.
Process in hot water bath for 20-30 minutes. (Yield: 6-8 pints tomato soup concentrate)
TO PREPARE SOUP: Mix one part jarred soup mixture with equal part of milk and heat thoroughly.