Unlike in those pictures in New York where we are freezing, we have had such a crazy warm winter here in San Diego, I can practically count the number of times I’ve worn boots on one hand! In fact, I was wearing sandals at my last kidney appointment and the doctor said, “It looks like you aren’t ready for summer to end!” She was right. I am especially loving the warm weather because I am able to make up for this past summer (when I was waiting for my kidney transplant and couldn’t do much) by riding bikes, paddleboarding and going for walks on the beach. So fun! Still, there are some advantages to winter. Like soup. There is nothing quite like satisfying, soothing soup gliding down your throat and warming you all over like a big over sized blanket. I should have been carrying soup with me everywhere I went in New York!
So a few days ago I decided to pretend it was cold so I could bring my favorite tomato soup to a favorite friend who had just had a baby because I knew she would love this soup – and because I selfishly wanted a bowl all to myself before I took her the rest – is that bad?
I just couldn’t help myself. This soup leaves you licking your lips with its layered flavors of minced celery, carrots, garlic and onions, simmered with fire roasted tomatoes, oregano, and basil and then made ridiculously more delicious with the addition of Parmesan cheese and cream (or milk).
After I dropped the soup off to my friend, I received the following text, “That food blew all our minds!! That soup was incredible. Seriously my dad can’t stop talking about it….”
And that is why this is my favorite tomato soup.
Whether your weather is in the 70’s or 20’s – you want to make this soup because “it will blow your mind!”
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 stalks celery
- 4 medium carrots
- ½ large onion
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 tablespoon dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 (14.5 oz.) cans fire roasted diced tomatoes with juice
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup flour
- 2 cups half and half, heavy cream or milk (or a combination)*
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Add celery, carrots, onion and garlic to a food processor and pulse until finely minced (or mince by hand).
- Heat oil in a 4 qt. soup pot. Add minced vegetables and saute for 5 minutes.
- Add basil, oregano, bay leaf, tomatoes, and chicken broth.
- Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until carrots are tender.
- While soup simmers, melt butter over low heat; add flour and cook, stirring constantly for 5 minutes. Slowly stir in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups of hot soup and stir until smooth. Add soup/flour mixture back into soup pot. Simmer, stirring constantly, until soup begins to thicken.
- Add Parmesan cheese and whisk to blend. Stir in warmed half and half/cream/milk, salt and pepper. Simmer an additional 15-20 minutes on low, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leaf and serve. Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional).
I think the diced tomatoes are DELISH in this soup but feel free to mince them if you don't like their texture
Recipe adapted from Today’s Mama
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