Rich, creamy, and packed with flavor – this bisque has it all. Roasted peppers give it a nice robust color.
Always on the quest for a quick lunch fix, I often turn to soups. Tomato bisque is one of my favorites. Filled with garden canned tomatoes, fresh herbs, and roasted red peppers it really brings home the flavor.
What is the difference between Tomato Bisque and Tomato Soup? Simply put: Take a can of tomato soup, if you mix it with a can of water you have tomato soup. If you mix it with a can of milk you have Bisque. Bisque indicates there is cream in the soup. The cream requires cooking at lower temperatures for a bit longer so as not to curdle the milk.
- Peel and dice 1/2 of a yellow onion.
- Peel and mince 2 garlic cloves.
- Roughly chop 3 clean basil leaves.
- Peel and chop 1/3 cup roasted red pepper.
TOMATO BISQUE BASE:
In a Dutch oven or large heavy saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 – 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the garlic, about 1 tablespoon of the basil (saving the rest for garnish), and 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves. Season with some salt and pepper, to taste and add 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, optional. Because I use canned tomatoes the acid levels rises as the tomatoes sit on the shelf. Therefore, I like to add baking soda to help counteract the acidity of the tomatoes.
Cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of cooking sherry and cook for 2 more minutes to cook the alcohol off. Add the red pepper, 1 pint (16 oz canned) diced tomatoes and 1/2 cup chicken stock, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Allow bisque to cool to room temperature. Purée in a blender or food processor until smooth, working in batches if necessary. For a silky consistency, run soup through a sieve or strainer before returning to the pot. Heat over medium heat, but do not bring to a boil. Instead keep the heat at about about 185°F so the cream does not curdle when added.
Add 1 tablespoon butter and let melt completely before slowly stirring in 1 tablespoon heavy cream. At this point the soup should be creamy, but if it is a little too thin keep cooking until reduced to a creamy consistency.
Garnish with the reserved basil. It is also fun to add a dollop of sour cream or freshly grated Parmesan. Hey, the world is your oyster so go crazy. Pop some croutons on that baby if you feel the urge!
- 2 tablespoons olive oil + extra for garnish
- 1/2 cup yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon basil + extra for garnish, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon sherry
- 1/3 cup roasted red pepper, chopped
- 1 pint canned diced tomatoes, 16-oz can
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
In a Dutch oven or large heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the garlic, basil, oregano, baking, salt and pepper. Cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add sherry and cook for 2 additional minutes, or until alcohol is cooked off.
Add the red pepper, tomatoes and stock, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Allow soup to cool to room temperature. Purée in a blender or food processor until smooth, working in batches if necessary. Return to pot. Heat over medium heat.
Add butter and let melt completely before slowly stirring in the cream. Remove from heat.
Drizzle some olive oil over top and garnish with basil. Serve immediately.