Thursday, January 14, 2010
Cream of tomato soup
Several years ago my cousin Audrey, her sister in law Julie, and I used to take road trips to the Hamburg, New York, area to visit cross stitch shops. Sometimes we would stop in the college town of Fredonia for lunch at a cute little restaurant that was known for its tomato-mushroom soup. I was hesitant to try the soup the first time because I am not crazy about milk in tomato soup. I'm not crazy about milk at all! But this soup was out of this world. We figured it must have been made with heavy cream because it was so rich. From what Audrey and Julie told me, the owner of the restaurant refuses to share his recipe. It keeps the customers coming back for sure.
This time of year I like to make a lot of soup, so I got out my "Is It Soup Yet" cookbook (by Dot Vartan) and tried the Italian Cream of Tomato. The recipe doesn't call for mushrooms (which you can add if you want), but the soup was thick and rich and hit the spot. My husband is not an adventerous eater; the same old stuff is just fine with him. But he liked this soup enough to ask that I pack some in his lunch tomorrow. Here's the recipe.
2 cups chicken broth
1 small onion, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped green pepper
1 tablespoon chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper (I used plain old black)
1 16-ounce can of Italian stewed tomatoes
1 8-ounce can of tomato sauce
1 6-ounce can of tomato paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup half-and-half
Combine the chicken broth, onion, green pepper, celery, garlic, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for five minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add the undrained stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Stir in the half-and-half. Heat through and serve.