June 30th, 2009
Tomato & Basil Soup
I always thought that a good tomato soup needed a certain amount of fat in it to taste right, until I made this soup. With simple but robust flavours of tomatoes, basil leaves and pepper, this soup simply stands out! And to make things lighter, there is zero amount of fat in it. An ideal soup for weight watchers and the calorie conscious.
I don’t belong to either of the above categories. This recipe happened by accident when I forgot to add my usual dose of olive oil into the bubbling pot. It was only when I tasted my first spoon that I realized my omission and by the second spoon I realized that it was a welcome one.
I enjoyed this soup so much that thereafter I always made it without any fat in it and almost always served it with crash hot potatoes and oregano paneer. You could also experiment with this soup by adding other herbs like sage and tarragon. I made this once with a combination of basil, sage and tarragon with excellent results.
Tomato and Basil Soup Recipe
If fresh basil is unavailable, substitute it with dried basil leaves. Although this would be a compromise on the flavour, it is quite an acceptable thing to do when fresh herbs are simply unavailable.
1 kg (2 lb) tomatoes
2 medium sized carrots
375 ml (1 ½ cups water)
2 tsp natural brown sugar
2 tbsp fresh basil leaves, chopped*
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 ½ tsp salt or to taste
Wash and remove the eyes of the tomatoes. Cut them into halves. Chop the carrots into bite sized pieces. In a pressure cooker, combine the tomatoes, carrots and the water and pressure cook until 2 whistles.
Alternatively use a saucepan and cook until the vegetables are done.
Allow to cool and strain and reserve the cooking water. In a food processor or blender puree the vegetables until smooth and strain again to remove seeds, if any.
In a saucepan, mix the reserved water with the pureed vegetables, roughly chopped basil leaves, sugar, salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
* Substitute 2 tbsp fresh basil leaves (chopped) with 1 tsp dried basil