Monday, 14 December 2015

Roasted Tomato Soup with Ginger and Mint

Imagine yourself sitting by the window and watching the first snowfall. Somewhere in the most picturesque chalet overlooking the Alps or in the comfort of your own home, curled up under a soft plush blanket, by the fire place. Not a worry in the world, just one idyllically peaceful, lazy afternoon reading a book, looking through old photographs or doing whatever makes you happy. Sounds heavenly doesn't it? You know what would make it even better? A warm bowl of velvety soup. Aromatic, healing and calming. Maybe even served in a big mug so you can drink it while curled up under that soft plush blanket. Hold that cup in your hands and it warms up your entire body. Take a sip or a spoonful and it warms up your soul. 

Roast tomatoes and peppers, perfumed with earthy thyme, olive oil and citrusy notes of sherry vinegar. A touch of ginger brings that invigorating and reviving burst of flavour while sweet chilli pepper gives your tongue little sensual bites that intrigue and energize your taste buds. And then there comes the cream. It adds that comforting richness, body and rounds out all the flavours of the soup. The tip of the flavour pyramid is mint. So familiar yet never failing to surprise your tongue with a splash of its stimulating essence. This soup is that unforgettable first course of any dinner party or your own party for one. But be warned. After you try this soup, a cup of tea on a chilly day may not do the trick anymore. You will associate the ultimate comfort and warmth with a bowl or a cup of this velvety, warm goodness. 


3 large tomatoes, 2 red bell peppers, 5 cloves of garlic, 1 full red onion, 1 sweet chilli pepper, 2 sprigs of thyme, splash of sherry vinegar, olive oil, small piece of ginger, 2 litres of chicken stock (or vegetable stock for a vegetarian option), 1 cup of heavy cream (35%), salt, pepper to taste, 1 teasp. brown sugar, about 6 mint leaves. 


Cut your tomatoes and red peppers in halves, chop your onion and arrange on a baking sheet. Throw in full garlic cloves and a chilli pepper. Drizzle with olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper and sprinkle with sugar. Mix so they are well coated. Add thyme. Preheat your oven to F400 and roast for about 30 minutes. 

Remove thyme and transfer your roast vegetables to a large pot. Add chicken stock, grate in some ginger (not more than 1 tsp.) and let it boil for 20 min.

Add mint and puree with a hand blender. Add cream and mix until well incorporated. Serve with a dollop of crème fraiche and some chopped mint.

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