Let me start this post by saying I hate when my kids go back to school. I always told myself when they were little that I wasn’t going to be ‘that mom’ that looks at mom’s with small kids and says things like ‘enjoy them while they are little’ and ‘they grow so fast’. Well I am definitely that mom and worse. I have two years till my oldest leaves the house and I am dreading it. My youngest is 10 and I am holding on to her childhood with an iron grip. 😉 But, I guess there is a positive side to them going back to school, I have time to work on my recipes and blog again! I love to see my kids faces when they get home from school and I’ve made something yummy for them. I feel like I bake and cook to feed their souls, and we always set aside a time for family dinner even if there’s one at dance, football or other activities. Sometimes it’s the effort that counts!
This recipe comes with a WARNING… it is for people who definitely like to do things from scratch and make things more difficult for themselves then they need to be. I love to be in the kitchen so this is fun for me. But for those of you who are like, I’m just going to go and buy the tomato soup from kneaders or blue lemon… I totally get it! 😉 Their soup is way yummy!
We love homegrown tomatoes at our house but at the end of the summer we always have so many that I need to come up with ways to use them all! After experimenting with many tomato soup recipes this recipe is the one I have loved the most and have stuck with for the last couple of years. I always serve it with grilled cheese sandwiches or homemade croutons.
First, pick your tomatoes and wash them well. I used about 33 small to medium tomatoes which comes to about 12 cups of tomatoes cut up. If you have a little more or less it’s ok, you can easily tweak the other ingredients to taste.
Then remove the skins. This is done by immersing the tomatoes in boiling water for about 1 minute or until the skin of the tomatoes crack. Transfer the tomatoes from the boiling water to an ice bath.
Now they are ready to use. For the soup, roughly chop 1 small onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 4 stalks of celery and 2 peeled carrots. Heat over medium to medium high heat a tablespoon or two of extra virgin olive oil in a large pot. Sauté the chopped ingredients in the olive oil for about 5-10 minutes until tender and fragrant. Add 1 cup of chicken or vegetable broth or water and let that simmer while you get the tomatoes ready.
While that is cooking, core and peel the tomatoes, roughly chop them and add them all to the pot. Add all of the other ingredients and let the soup simmer for about 20 minutes or until the soup is softened enough to blend. I was impatient one time and blended it a little to early, it wasn’t as smooth as it normally is and needless to say, not as good.
Ok, this is the part that would be so much easier with an emulsion blender. I keep forgetting to buy one, and I always regret it when I get to this point. So if you do have one, awesome! Blend it up with the emulsion blender in the pot. If you don’t have one, transfer a little bit of soup into a blender, purée, then pour that soup into another pot. A pain? Yes. Make sure you don’t put too much soup in the blender at one time. I did that once and hot soup was coming out of the top, ouch!
At this point add any additional salt, chicken bouillon, broth or spices it may need. If you want to get fancy, add a little bit of heavy whipping cream. It makes it taste like the restaurant tomato soup. Don’t add too much though or your palate will be coated with cream. Just enough to taste. If it is too acidic you can add a 1/2 tsp of baking soda to cut the acidity. I usually just add a little more salt and it is fine. The last time I made this soup I served it with grilled cheese sandwiches made from my homemade rosemary bread. Yummy!
Homemade Tomato Soup
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 4 stalks of celery, diced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic chopped or minced
- 1-2 T extra virgin olive oil
- 1-2 cups chicken or vegetable broth depending on how thick or thin you want the soup
- 1 T Worcestershire sauce
- 4 drops hot sauce
- 1 T fresh chopped thyme or 2 tsp dried thyme
- 2 tsp chicken bouillon
- 1 tsp salt
- 12 cups chopped fresh tomatoes, cored and peeled (around 30-35 small to medium)
- Optional- 1/4-1/2 c heavy whipping cream
- Optional- garnish with fresh basil
Peel and core the tomatoes by immersing the clean tomatoes in boiling water for a minute or until the skins crack. Transfer to an ice bath. Now they are ready to peel, core and chop.
In a large pot heat up olive oil and sautée onions, celery, carrots and garlic until tender about 5-10 minutes. Add the broth. Add the chopped tomatoes and simmer on low to medium heat for 20 minutes.
Blend the soup by using an emulsion blender and leave it in the pot. If you don’t have an emulsion blender; transfer the soup in small batches to a blender, purée, then pour the soup in another pot and keep on warm till ready to serve. Adjust the spices, salt or add heavy whipping cream at this point if desired.