A creamy tomato soup made with home-canned tomatoes, pesto, and roasted garlic.
Grilled Cheese Sandwich month (season? day? week?) is coming, and before I share my fig-filled, or my tomato jam-spread, or my guacamole & corn grilled cheese creations I'd like to share the perfect accessory for all good grilled cheese sandwich meals--tomato soup.
Truth be told, I was a huge fan of the red & white can as recently as last year. Heck, some of my favorite winter school day breakfasts as a kid were cups of tomato soup with a grilled cheese sandwich. What changed for me was the realization that I had the key ingredient to make a deliciously flavorful tomato soup right at my fingertips--a pantry with jars of home-canned tomatoes. I'm going to tell you about canning tomatoes when it's NOT canning season for one reason: to lay the groundwork/plant the seed in your brain, so that when summer comes you've had time to mull over the concept. [I'm honest and upfront with my brainwashing techniques.]
|Canning need not be 3 generations slaving away in the kitchen. But it's fun if it turns out that way :)|
|You do NOT need all of these supplies to can a few quarts of crushed tomatoes!|
- If you've got neighbors who are overrun with ripe tomatoes, especially neighbors who are older than you, offer to put up the whole mess and share the preserved bounty with the gardener.
- Ask your Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farmer to sell you extras. Your farmers will be delighted to have ripe tomatoes go quickly and easily to a good home.
- If you don't participate in a CSA but do frequent the farmer's market, tell a farmer that you're interested in "seconds" or "canning tomatoes", and when tomatoes are abundant you'll be doing each other a favor buying ripe and ready, perhaps slightly cosmetically damaged, tomatoes for a good price.
|Gratuitiously long caption as I don't know how to make words appear when you hover over the photo (though I do know how to link parts of a collage to other posts): All you need to can is a tall pot with some sort of shelf to keep the jars off the bottom; and jars, and water--lots of water; and a heat source to heat that water (and heat the tomatoes, too); tomatoes, lemon juice and salt and a sharp knife to cut the tomatoes plus a bucket to store the peels before they go to the compost, and a flat surface for them to cool, and a pantry to store your bounty. And the floating tomatoes? I screwed up and let them get cool in between packing and processing. No problem, still good eating.|
Honestly, it's trickier to bake a cake--and not from scratch, I'm talking from a mix. Did you measure the oil and water correctly? Are there shells in the batter? How do you know you've beaten it long enough? How do you know if the pan is properly prepared? How do you know if the top springs back enough? Sheesh! Tomatoes are acidic enough to start off, and you further make the environment hostile to undesirable stuff by adding lemon juice to each jar. Follow the method from the sites above and you'll be successful. [/brainwashing]
Once you've got a quart of crushed tomatoes, soup is a short simmer away. [Or a long simmer, if your spouse is unexpectedly delayed and dinner is late.]
Creamy Tomato Soup with Home-Canned Tomatoes (serves 4-6)
2 Tablespoons butter
1 cup chopped sweet onion (or leek, or yellow onion, I've done it with all 3)
1 ½ teaspoons flour
1 quart crushed tomatoes
2 Tablespoons prepared pesto (here's how I put up mine)
2 Tablespoons tomato paste (Alanna shares a simple tip for the rest of the can)
2 cloves roasted garlic (here's how I roast and store my crop) or fresh garlic or dried, I'm easy
1 piece parmesan rind (ask your fancy cheese counter to sell ya some cheap)
¾ teaspoon salt (I used kosher)
½ teaspoon pepper
6 ounces (by volume) evaporated milk
In a large pot (at least 3.5 quart) over medium heat, melt the butter. Add onion and sauté for 5 to 8 minutes until softened. Sprinkle flour over top, stir to coat with butter, and cook an additional 3 to 5 minutes until lightly browned. Stir in tomatoes, stock, pesto, tomato paste, garlic, parmesan rind and seasonings. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes up to 2 hours. Before serving remove the parmesan rind and stir in the evaporated milk. Use an immersion blender (or puree in batches) if you like a smooth soup.
Want some sandwich ideas to go with this soup? Click on the image to go to the post:
One more photo since I was having fun playing with Vignette and Antique Effects in iPhoto:
This post is shared with What's Cookin Wednesday, Fresh Foods Wednesday, Fabulously Frugal , From the Farm Blog Hop, Clever Chicks Blog Hop, Tasty Tuesdays, Simple Supper Tuesday