ROASTED TOMATO AND RED PEPPER SOUP


For over a decade, the red pepper was my enemy. My sister’s allergic, my mother, doesn’t like the taste and I just never thought to buy them. It wasn’t a featured vegetable in my upbringing.

Anyway in a light bulb moment at the supermarket, I picked up a pack, they were cheap and decided to commit to the purchase. (I often get to the checkout and put back half my shopping). I then remembered a soup that I had eaten years five years ago; it was delicious, rich in flavour, sweet and tart, but full of taste. The peppers packed a punch and lifted the tomato flavour so I was going to recreate it and I did.

The real key to the soup is the roasting of the vegetables, so the vegetables natural flavours come out the tomatoes sugars caramelize- so don’t cut out this method and adding the milk at the end balances the acidity.

If there are any vegetables lurking in your fringe such as courgettes, aubergines, carrots, just throw them into the roasting pan as well. It is a great way to use up veg at the end of their life. Happy soup making.

SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS

  • Olive oil
  • 2 sweet onions roughly chopped
  • 4 sticks of celery, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 8 ripe tomatoes quartered and cored
  • 4 red peppers, cored and sliced
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Small bunch of basil, torn
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • Half a chili, roughly chopped
  • Olive oil
  • Vegetable stock
  • 200 ml milk
  • Sea salt cracked black pepper

METHOD

  • Preheat the oven to 350oc
  • Place the garlic, celery, onion, tomatoes, pepper, sugar, balsamic and chillies in a roasting tray.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and mix well.
  • Place in the oven and roast for between 30-45 minutes.
  • Stir halfway through.
  • When the vegetables are roasted, and the liquid has come out of the tomatoes, place in a saucepan.
  • Add vegetable stock until the vegetables are covered. Top with the milk and season.
  • Simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  • Cool and blend.
  • Serve immediately or refridgerate or freeze. Perhaps alongside a crusty baguette topped with goats cheese or mozzarella.

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