Tomato Soup – An Irish Summer in a Bowl


I love tomatoes.  Especially in soup.  And often at this time of year it’s the go to soup for a quick lunch.  And although there’s a teeny bit of washing up with this recipe, it doesn’t require the pain-stakingly arduous and time consuming task of peeling the tomatoes pre cooking. I like the Roma tomato variety, but sometimes you just use what’s available. They are a meatier variety so you may need more stock to get the right consistency.

Easy Tomato Soup

Ingredients:

1.5kg of ripe Tomatoes

1 medium onion

1 medium carrot

1 stick of celery

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons of tomato purée

2 bay leaves

1.2 litres/ 2 pints hot vegetable stock (made with boiling water and 4 rounded tsp bouillon powder or 2 stock cubes).
Tomato Soup
Method

Peel and chop the onion and the carrot. Chop the celery stick into roughly the same size pieces.

Add the olive oil into a large heavy-based pan and heat it over a low heat.  Add in the onion, carrot and celery and mix them together.  Season well.  Cover and leave to seat for 10 minutes until soft, stirring occasionally.

Tomato Soup

Holding the tube over the pan, squirt in about 2 tablespoons of tomato purée, then stir it around so it turns the vegetables red.  Quarter the tomatoes and slide them in off the chopping board.  Add the 2 bay leaves into a few pieces and throw them into the pan. Stir to mix everything together, put the lid on the pan and let the tomatoes stew over a low heat for 10 minutes until they shrink down in the pan and their juices flow nicely.  From time to time, give the pan a good shake – this will keep everything well mixed.
Tomato Soup

Slowly pour in the 1.25 litres of hot stock (or just water if you have no stock), stirring at the same time to mix it with the vegetables.  Turn up the heat as high as it will go and wait until everything is bubbling, then turn the heat down to low again and put the lid back on the pan. Cook gently for 25 minutes, stirring a couple of times. At the end of cooking the tomatoes will have broken down and be very slushy looking.

Remove the pan from the heat, take the lid off and stand back for a few seconds or so while the steam escapes, then fish out the pieces of bay leaf and throw them away. Ladle the soup into your blender until it’s about three-quarters full, fit the lid on loosely, covering with a teatowel and turn the machine on slow. . As the steam escapes you can increase the speed. Blitz until the soup’s smooth then pour the puréed soup through a sieve into a large bowl (A little poncy I know but the skins need to come out- it’s easier than peeling them, I promise). Repeat with the soup that’s left in the pan. (The soup may now be frozen for up to 3 months. Defrost before reheating.)

Tomato Soup

Pour the puréed soup back into the pan and reheat it over a medium heat for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until you can see bubbles breaking gently on the surface.
Tomato Soup

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