Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Quick Cream of Tomato Soup by NomNomPaleo

I love cream of tomato soup.  In my pre-paleo days, I used to like to go La Madeleine and have a cup of creamy tomato basil soup.  While searching for recipes last week, I came across this recipe for Quick Cream of Tomato Soup on NomNomPaleo.  I remembered that I had two cans of fire roasted tomatoes in my pantry that I had bought for something else and then forgot what I was going to make with them, so I took it as a sign that it was time to try to regain that creamy tomato soup flavor experience.  

First, I gathered my ingredients.  

In her recipe post, she says her inspiration came from an Everyday Paleo recipe that she links to as well.  I'm glad she did.   The main difference between the recipes is which allium you use:  red onion (Everyday Paleo) or leeks (NomNomPaleo).  I wanted to use leeks as I thought that would have a more subtle flavor.  When I went shopping for this recipe, the store I went to only had 1 puny looking leek.  Drat.  I was not in the mood to go to a second grocery store, so I decided I would use NomNomPaleo's recipe but for the red onion.  

I decided to get the onion chopping out of the way first.  Sarah's instruction is to dice the onion fine.

Next, I opened both cans of my fire roasted tomatoes and added them to my blender.  I don't have a Vitamax and imagine that unless I win one or get one as a gift, I never will.  I think my plain ole Cuisinart blender will do just fine.  

After pureeing the tomatoes, I heated the coconut oil in a medium sauce pan and added the onion once the oil had melted.  

Once the onions were soft and started to brown, I added the minced garlic.  I kept the onions and garlic on the heat for about a minute more until the garlic was fragrant, per the recipe instructions.

And now for a little ingredient do si do.  The next instruction is to put 1/2 of the pureed tomatoes into a medium sauce pan.  I was already using my only medium sauce pan for the onions and garlic.  It seemed that the second medium sauce pan was only to hold the tomato puree for a bit, I decided to put the onions and garlic into a bowl and then pour 1/2 of the pureed tomatoes into the same sauce pan I had been using.  

I then I added the onions and garlic to the blender jar.  

After pureeing the tomatoes, onions and garlic, I checked for consistency.  There weren't any large chunks of onion left, so I poured the contents of the blender jar back to the sauce pan.  Based on my experience making BBQ sauce, I decided it was about as smooth as it was going to get which was fine.    

I then added the coconut milk and homemade chicken broth to the tomatoes, turned up the burner and waited for it to come to the boil.  Once it was boiling, I set a timer for 10 minutes and turned the burner down to low.  The sauce pan I was using is 2.5 quarts.  Based on how full it was by the time I added all of the ingredients, I wouldn't recommend using a pan any smaller than that.  

I like a little basil with my tomato soup so I chopped a few fresh leaves while it finished simmering.  

Here's my finished soup. 

Accessibility and Cost of Ingredients:  You should be able to find all of the ingredients for this recipe at your big box grocery store fairly inexpensively.  Like NomNomPaleo, I like to use Aroy-D Coconut Milk.  In fact, I would like to publicly thank her for turning me on to this awesome brand.  The tetrapaks are BPA-free and it's 100% Coconut Milk (no preservatives).  I usually like to buy the smaller 8.5 ounce cartons as I seem to waste less than when I buy the larger carton (33 ounce) or a can.  This past weekend, I discovered my local Asian market now carries the large cartons ($2.49/carton)!  Awesome!  Check out your local Asian markets and see if they carry this milk or order some online.  You won't be disappointed.  

Preparation and Cooking Time:  There wasn't really a good line between preparation and cooking for this recipe, so I just recorded a total time of 35 minutes to prepare/cook the soup.  

Clean Up:  Everything I used went into the dishwasher except for my blender jar and sauce pan.  I hand washed my blender jar as I wasn't in the mood to disassemble it to put in the dishwasher.  

The Paleo Review:  Thumbs Up!  When I first tasted the soup, I could really taste each of the ingredients distinctly.  It was a spoonful of creamy, coconutty, sweet oniony, garlicy, rich tomatoes.  I figured that this might be the sort of recipe that is better on the second day and I was right.  A night in the refrigerator allowed all of those flavors to meld together into a super fresh full bodied creamy tomato soup.  

I'm not sure how long this will keep in the refrigerator and its a lot of soup for a one person household, so I've put a freezer bag of the soup in the freezer to test whether or not it freezes well.  I'll update this post with my findings once I've defrosted and tried it after a few days.  

If you've had a craving for an easy soup that has full and creamy flavor, give this recipe a try.