Roasted tomato and garlic soup.

I have to warn you, I may start waxing sentimental over fall during the next few weeks. I love this time of year — early fall — when I can still get tomatoes and corn but pears, squash, and figs are also in market.  The stress of the holidays hasn’t kicked in, an evening walk is comfortable in a long sleeve shirt, and the windows can be left open all night to enjoy the chilly breeze.  It’s the specific time of year when seeing a pumpkin on someone’s steps isn’t just another pumpkin and when thoughts of ghouls and wicked witches are delightfully wholesome.

The leaves start to turn—but aren’t taking over the yard—and the idea of spending the weekend snuggling on the couch with my fiance seems just right.  And then there’s soup.  Soup shines in fall; I’m not conflicted about it, like I can be with summer soups.  Roasted tomato and garlic soup, in particular, is  suited to early fall, when roasted garlic is wholly, utterly, in my thoughts again.  Sticky, sweet, and slyly pungent, roasted garlic will turn you on your head, and combining it with its true love, the roasted tomato, is even better.

You’ll have to act quickly to make this soup.  At least in the Northeast, tomato season is coming to a close, which is a sad, sad thing.  So sad, you know, that I think it’d be okay to make this soup with tomatoes that are a little less-than, if you don’t catch any before they are gone.  Or, as I know I will this winter, try making this with canned whole San Marazanos by just taking them out of the can and washing off the excess sauce before continuing with the recipe (you can leave the tomatoes whole, here.)

If you like tomato soup, you’ll love this one; it tastes like tomato soup should taste, not too salty like the processed varieties, nor too sweet.  The garlic adds background depth and a touch of caramel sweetness, but isn’t going to prohibit anyone from kissing strangers later in the day.  And, at least for me, this soup epitomizes the beginning of fall even more than meatloaf.  I may be a little biased, though, since this soup is also a part of my livelihood.  I’ve started a little project, the Stockton Soup Lady.  I’m selling soups about town and this is one of my favorites.  Homemade Soups, Hand Delivered is my slogan, and I’m a wee bit proud of thinking it up.  It’s a teeny-tiny project now, and I rather like it that way: I can spend lots of time going from farm to farm, choosing my ingredients, and I don’t have to bribe friends for freezer space to store all the chicken stock I’m making.  It’s really a lot of fun.

Roasted Tomato and Garlic Soup

adapted from Gourmet

4 lb tomatoes, halved lengthwise
8 garlic cloves, left unpeeled
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
2 teaspoons sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
1/3 cup heavy cream

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat to 350°F.

Arrange tomatoes, cut sides up, in 1 layer in a large shallow baking pan and add garlic to pan. Drizzle tomatoes with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast tomatoes and garlic 1 hour, then cool in pan on a rack. Peel garlic.

Cook onion, oregano, and sugar in butter in a 6- to 8-quart heavy pot over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, garlic, and stock and simmer, covered, 20 minutes.

Purée soup in batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids), then force through a sieve into cleaned pot, discarding solids. Stir in cream and salt and pepper to taste and simmer 2 minutes.  Serves 6-8.

31 thoughts on “Roasted tomato and garlic soup.”

  1. Where I live (Florida), tomatoes are horrible in the summer and great in the winter. I can’t wait for the first batch of yummy tomatoes from the farmers market to try this soup -it’s made with pretty much all the ingredients I love.

  2. I highly recommend reading “Slow and Difficult Soups” about the soup peddler in (my home base) Austin, TX. Very similar business idea, but delivered on bike, and its a cute story about his rivalry with the ice cream man.

  3. Good for you! Are you able to do that out of your kitchen without a license or did you have to get commercial space? It makes me wish I was living in your area…..for the farms, and for your soup. At least I can say ‘I knew her when…..’

  4. I wish I lived close by so I could buy some of your delicious sounding soup! Roasting veggies before making them into soup really makes such a difference…enjoy the last of the tomatoes!

  5. oh god, you got me so pumped in the first few sentences, then i kept reading and became depressed. i, like you, love this time of year too. it’s better than spring. you put it so well in that first paragraph. but, what makes me most sad is the fact that our veggie crop is really coming to an end. having only those nasty, mealy, steroid-filled tomatoes for the next 9 months utterly kills me. but make extra of this, stash it in the freezer and you’ll be smiling in the middle of winter.

  6. This looks and sounds just fantastic, I’ve been roasting alot of tomatoes lately, this hot and heavy summer in Rome has been good for nice red things,and we still have a bit of time to go.
    I just need to make some chicken stock then I’m all set.

  7. Early fall is my FAVORITE time of year, by far. Sweaters and boots and blazers, oh AND roasted vegetables, red wine, braised meats…This soup looks perfect. Can’t wait for it to get a bit chilly!

  8. I made your soup for dinner last night and it was wonderful. In fact, I just had a bowl for lunch. I swirled in some pesto and asiago cheese. Yum! I wish my house still smelled of roasting tomatoes and garlic. There should be a candle that smells like that. Thank you!

  9. I’m really jonesing for soup and this looks pretty amazing! And I love that you are selling your soups around town! I’ve been wanting to do that too, but I don’t have a commercial kitchen. Boo!

  10. hey, congrats on the new soup-making venture. that’s a great idea for you. 🙂 and the recipe sounds delish.

    One of our tomato plants is dying back, but the other — the one that’s been prolific all along — is still going gangbusters. I’ll have to give this a try with all the ripe ones sitting on the countertop.

  11. ps: if you’re making a ton of stock that you don’t have room to freeze, you have the PERFECT excuse to buy a pressure canner. It has changed my soup-making life, being able to have shelf-stable jars ready whenever I need them, without defrosting.

  12. So, I made this, and I have to say: Thank you! The recipe turned out really great, and gave me something to do with my tomato harvest. All of our dinner guests loved it, too.

  13. Hi! I’ve been reading your blog for months, and it always makes my mouth water. I love the way you write and your recipes and photography are stunning. This was the first recipe I felt comfortable trying (I’m fairly new to cooking more than ramen and hot dogs, and I don’t have a lot of time on my hands). It was FANTASTIC! I made it for family over the holiday and it was so easy and delicious I whipped up a pot for me to eat for lunch at work all week. Thanks so much 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s