Fall is finally here! That means it’s time to throw on a chunky sweater and eat something warm and cozy. I love a good tomato soup and the roasting of all the veggies makes this one extra special. This Tuscan-inspired soup is healthy, hearty, spicy, very low fat (just the olive oil) and vegan! I know it’s easy to just heat some pre-made soup out of the can, but it’s so unhealthy! Those “healthy” soups are filled with sodium and preservatives. I’m guilty of it, too. Let’s kick that bad habit together! Repeat after me… I will never make soup out of the can again…sorry, Campbell’s.
What you need:
6 – 7 fresh tomatoes (quartered)
4 heads of garlic
2 red bell peppers (cut the core out and remove the seeds)
2 yellow onions (quartered)
1 can of crushed tomatoes (go for the organic low sodium variety)
1 cup vegetable stock (also organic low sodium)
1 cup torn basil leaves (tearing vs. chopping supposedly does to something to the flavor according to food network, who knows)
1/2 cup of red wine
1/4 cup of chipotle adobo sauce (comes in a can, just use sauce, actual peppers will be too hot!)
1 tablespoon of sea salt
1 tablespoon of black pepper
3 glass oven dishes
1 large stock pot
To roast garlic: don’t break the garlic apart. Instead, slice the heads off and peel back any loose layers of skin, drizzle with olive oil, salt and wrap them up tight in foil. I had some thyme sitting in my fridge so I placed a few sprigs in with the garlic.
If you have never roasted garlic before, girrrl, get ready. It’s to die for. If you make extra, mash with a fork, mix with some soft butter and spread over crusty bread. Whole other level! You should also note, roasted garlic is not the same bad breath igniter as raw garlic. (Amen)
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
On 1st pan, arrange the quartered tomatoes
On 2nd pan arrange bell peppers and onion
On 3rd pan arrange garlic and springs of thyme
Drizzle with olive oil and salt them
Bake for 30-40 minutes or until soft and sunken
In separate large pot, simmer on low, 1 cup of vegetable stock, a can of crushed tomatoes (choose low sodium!) and a 1/4 cup of red wine (I used a cabernet but it doesn’t really matter…feel free to drink the rest).
When the tomatoes, bell peppers, onion and garlic are soft (approx 30 minutes) remove from heat.
Place tomatoes, onion, bell pepper in a vitamix or blender, pulse a couple times to desired thickness. If you’re like me, I tend to like a chunky soup, especially in the fall, so don’t over blend. Add to the pot.
To remove the garlic from their pods, just slip a knife into each section and they will come right out. I used about two heads of garlic in the soup. Mash with a fork. Add the basil, garlic, salt, pepper and chipotle adobo sauce.
Garnish with a sprinkle of feta (skip to keep it vegan!) and a couple basil leaves.
** Obviously the grilled cheese doesn’t fall under our vegan category but nothing beats a tomato soup & grilled cheese combo…I made a caprese salad inspired grilled cheese for a little dunking action**
Heat a pan to medium heat
Butter one side of each of your pieces of bread. (I used a jewish rye bread)
Layer slices of mozzarella, basil, and tomato
Once one side is browned, flip it…
Bundle up & soup away…