Fresh Tomato Basil Soup

This a delicious and easy way to enjoy those wonderful local tomatoes before they're gone.

Fresh Tomato Basil Soup

6 cups peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes, 8-12, depending on size*

1 med. onion, chopped

1 carrot peeled and chopped

1/2 cup celery chopped (this is a good use for those leaves!)

vegetable stock, about 3 cups (Pacific Low Salt Organic is nice)

1/4 cup basil chiffonnade

1 Tbs. olive oil or butter

salt and pepper to taste

To peel the tomatoes, cut a little x at the blossom end and put them into boiling water for about 30 seconds. Rinse in cold water so you can handle them and just peel back the skin. Cut the tomatoes in half at their equator and squish out the seeds and gel. Cut them in about 1/2" cubes. Cut up your onion, carrot and celery to the same size. Stack about 10 or 12 big basil leaves. Roll them up and slice very thinly across and you will have lovely shreds (chiffonade) of basil.

Heat the oil, or butter if you're not a vegan, in a large soup pot. Toss in your onion, carrot and celery and a pinch of salt (you can add more later, this is just to flavor these vegetables). Stir them at high heat just til you get a little color on them. Add the tomatoes and enough stock to just cover them. Taste for seasoning and add a little pepper and salt if you like. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 20 - 30 minutes. Add the basil, stir everything together, and serve. I like it chunky, but you can also use your immersion blender and turn this into a lovely puree.

Chiffonade a few more basil leaves for garnish and if your not a vegan, add some shaved parmesan or one of those parmesan crisps.(Kitchen Table Bakers, available at Nature's Bin) Very elegant and good hot or chilled. Serves 6 as a first course. Vegan and Gluten Free.

* Exact proportions are not crucial. And if you love garlic, go ahead and add a little with the onion. Just don't use any dried or powdered herbs. You'll notice the difference because these ingredients are so simple.

Josie Duennes

I'm the food service manager at Nature's Bin, the mother of 2 grown sons and happily married for 30 years.

Read More on Wellness Watch
Volume 8, Issue 18, Posted 9:58 PM, 09.05.2012