Lately, I have eaten Tomato Basil Soup but have never attempted to make it ~ until today. I found a nice recipe in my California Fresh Cook Book published by Jr League of Oakland-East Bay. If you are a vegetarian, on a tight budget, or just like fresh homemade food, this is a recipe for you!
What made this particularly special is that I made it with my son, whom I homeschool and we served the soup in warm Panera Bread Bowls.
Preheat a large pot over medium heat. Once hot, add 1/4 C Butter, 1 Medium Coarsely Chopped Vidalia Onion, 2 Medium Diced Carrots. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, rinse and quarter, 8 Medium Vine Ripe Tomatoes. Coarsely chop 1/4 C. Fresh Basil. Add Tomatoes, Basil, 1 tsp Salt, 3/4 tsp Sugar, 1/2 tsp Freshly Ground Pepper to the pot and stir to combine. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add 2 Cups of Chicken Stock (use Vegetable Stock for a vegetarian version). Cook for an additional 10 minutes.
At first we both thought the soup looked a tad bit thin, probably on account of my increasing the tomatoes from 5 to 8, so I added 1 Tbl uncooked Basmati Rice to the soup and once it was cooked, I blended it in for a heartier version. That is an option for you depending on your tastes.
Either using a blender in batches, blend soup until smooth and return to a clean pot or using a hand blender, whirl until the soup is blended. The hand blender will not make a completely smooth soup. If you want a silky smooth soup, use the blender method.
While soup is cooking, preheat the oven to 300 and add the desired number of bread bowls and bake until crusty. Remove a circular top and hollow out the bowl. Turn off the oven, but return the bread bowls to the warm oven until ready to serve.
Once soup is done, season if necessary and serve in the warm bread bowls. What a delicious lunch we had!!