It's officially soup season here in QLD. A little bit later to succumb to the cold than the southern states, our time is finally here and to celebrate I'm going to make soups galore! Last week I felt a little bit of chill in the air so I immediately became excited and scheduled two soups into the weekly meal schedule. I may admit, I might have been a little premature because the weather the following day was basically balmy. Not one to look back once I've declared soup season, I decided a soup that tastes like the tail end of QLD Autumn could be the go. I trawled through a fair few blogs looking for recipes and ended up seeing lots of glorious looking tomato soups all over the place, so went with Jamie Oliver's version of tomato soup. Local tomatoes are still abundant in Autumn up here in QLD, so I'm not being totally ridic with my choice; something I am thinking about more and more often. It's easy to say that you believe in local, seasonal and sustainable produce - but living with those restrictions takes a little more thought.
One thing I really need to buy this winter, is a stick blender, because pouring a huge pot of soup into the blender three times over is rarely fun! What do you guys use?
This soup turned out really well, but as I like my soups a little thicker- I decided to take out about 250 ml of stock. I also used a litre container of stock rather than stock cubes.
Recipe from Jamie Oliver's Ministry of Food cook book
2 sticks of celery
2 cloves of garlic
2 chicken stock or vegetable stock cubes, preferably organic
1 400g tin of plum tomatoes
3 large ripe tomatoes
small bunch of fresh basil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
To make your soup:
1. Peel and roughly slice the carrots. Slice the celery. Peel and roughly chop the onions. Peel and slice the garlic. Put a large pan on a medium heat and a couple lugs of olive oil. Add all your chopped and sliced ingredients and mix together with a wooden spoon.
2. Cook for around 10 to 15 minutes with the lid askew, until the carrots have softened but are still holding their shape, and the onion is lightly golden.
3. Put the stock cubes into a jug or pan and pour in 1.5 litres of boiling water from the kettle. Stir until the stock cubes are dissolved, then add to the pan your tinned and fresh whole tomatoes, including the green stalks that may still be attached to some of them (these give an amazing flavour – trust me!) Give it a good stir and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on. Meanwhile, pick your basil leaves
To serve your soup:
4. Remove the pan from the heat. Season with salt and pepper and add the basil leaves. Using a hand blender or liquidizer, pulse the soup until smooth. Season again before dividing between your serving bowls.
So, tell me readers, have you declared soup season? And if so- what soup is on your menu?