I just love tomato soup, but not the tinned variety so fondly recalled by Mr Saturday Night, with his memories of coming home on a Saturday morning after Rugby..
I’ve managed to convert him to this delicious, much healthier version. It’s literally ready in about 30 minutes – or even less if you conveniently ‘forget’ about the sieving bit..
Michel Roux announced his retirement and the Times had a section with his favourite ‘at home’ recipes. This is a fairly faithful copy of his recipe..
Make it for today, and heat it straight from the fridge for a few convenient lunches during the week.
- A large, high-sided saucepan
- A long-handled wooden spoon
- a hand blender (best for lazy people like me) or food processor Please see NOTES
- a sieve – optional, see NOTES
INGREDIENTS: This will make enough for 4-6 hearty helpings!
- 800g ripe tomatoes – woody core removed, and roughly chopped. Don’t worry about the seeds – put them all in!
- 25g butter
- 1 large onion, roughly chopped
- 2-3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- a pinch of dried chilli flakes, or half of a fat red chilli, chopped.
- 500mls hot vegetable stock – I use Marigold Bouillon powder
- salt and finely ground black pepper
- A drizzle of cream, if you’re feeling fancy!
METHOD: Honestly couldn’t be easier..
- Melt the butter in the saucepan, on a med-high heat
- Add the tomatoes, onions, garlic and chilli flakes, add some salt and pepper
- Stir well, allow to cook for a few minutes until everything is covered with the melted butter.
- Add all the stock now.
- Reduce heat, cover, and cook gently for about 15 minutes, until the tomatoes have melted down, and the onion is well softened.
- Remove from the heat and let it sit for a couple of minutes to cool slightly.
- Blitz with the hand blender until you can see/feel no lumpy bits
- If you like at this stage, you can pour the soup through the sieve – you’ll need a sizeable pot to sieve it into – You’ll find that it’s a fair bit of work, pushing everything through – use the wooden spoon for that, and a flat-bladed knife to scrape all the lovely bits off the underside of the sieve. At the end, you should be left with just a very small amount of tomatoey stuff in the sieve – basically just the skins and some other tough bits.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Serve with some crusty bread or some lovely sourdough croutons https://eatingforireland.com/recipe/homemade-croutons/
- I’m not sure about anybody else, but I stored my tomatoes in the fridge for years. Now though, I keep them in a cool corner and the difference in flavour is amazing. I’ve been using fresh, Irish-grown Plum tomatoes which were available during the summer – so delicious!
- The sieving bit – yes it’s worth it, but honestly, I find it a bit tedious. Spend a few extra moments blitzing the soup in its saucepan, and I’m almost certain you won’t need to sieve it.
- Hand blender – I have a Sainsbury’s ‘own brand’ one which cost me almost nothing a few years ago. Once I knew that it would work efficiently, I bought an extra to have stashed away in case the other one suddenly died on me. A good tip is to clean the end of it under boiling water as soon as possible after using it. That way you can have it dried and put away in a moment, free of clashing flavours for next time!