September 16, 2010 § 1 Comment
One of E.’s favorite things to make is tomato soup and he is spectacular at it. He has spent numerous hours and quite a few attempts figuring out the perfect balance of tomatoes, seasonings and bacon.
When he first told me that he was going to put bacon into the soup I have to say that I wasn’t too thrilled about it. Why would someone put bacon into a perfectly fine soup? But, he has always been great in the kitchen and I’m not one to turn down the potential consumption of bacon. To make a long story short it was amazing.
Fast forward to today, E. has been out of town for two weeks. And, since it has only been a short amount of time since our recent cohabitation, I’ve been missing him immensely. I thought that he absence would be the perfect excuse to try to recreate his infamous concoction? So I went to the grocery store, bought 3 pounds of tomatoes, 2 large onions, 1 pound of bacon and hoped for the best.
I decided that going it alone was not a wise idea. So, I elicited the help of Tyler Florence for his “ultimate tomato soup.” What I love most about his quest for the perfect tomato soup is that he takes the time to roast them. Roasting helps to bring out the natural sweetness of the tomatoes, as well as the onions and garlic that I also put on the roasting pan.
But what about the bacon? While the tomatoes et al are roasting in the oven, roughly chop the bacon and let it render in a large stock pot. Once the tomatoes are roasted, place them in the pot along with the onions. Remove the garlic from the paper and add it in as well. Pour in one cup of chicken stock, and blend with an immersion blender. This soup should be served hot, and goes extremely well with a grilled cheese sandwich- perfect for a fall dinner.
Roasted Tomato Soup
Inspired by Tyler Florence
3 pounds fresh tomatoes (mix of fresh heirlooms, cherry, vine and plum tomatoes), halved
6 cloves garlic, peeled
2 large yellow onions, quartered
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chicken stock
1 pound bacon, roughly chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves, optional
3/4 cup heavy cream, optional
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Wash, cut the tomatoes into halves. Spread the tomatoes, garlic cloves and onions onto a baking tray. Drizzle with 1/4 cup of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes, or until caramelized.
In a large stock pot, render the pound of bacon, about 7 minutes, over medium high heat.
Remove roasted tomatoes, garlic and onion from the oven and transfer to the stock pot. Add in the chicken stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until liquid has reduced by a third.
Wash and dry basil leaves, if using, and add to the pot. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth. Return soup to low heat, add cream and adjust consistency with remaining chicken stock, if necessary. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
September 13, 2010 § 1 Comment
Brunch food can get a little repetitive. Eggs, bacon, toast, sausage, waffles. I feel like I have it a million times before. Not to say that the classics can’t be great and completely hit the spot, but sometimes you are just looking for something a little different that pushes the envelope and makes things exciting again. « Read the rest of this entry »
September 10, 2010 § 2 Comments
You know when you‘re getting ready to go on a trip and the clothes are all packed, the camera batteries are fully charged and then you look around and realize that there is food left that is bound to go bad? Well, that is exactly what led me to this recipe.
Scrounging around the kitchen for bits and pieces that can be compiled into a tasty meal can be difficult. I’m sure one day someone will develop an iPhone app where you input the ingredients you have available and a magical, great tasting recipe is built for you. However, since this service is not currently available, I had to brainstorm on my own. « Read the rest of this entry »
September 5, 2010 § 3 Comments
How does one describe a nearly two-month absence?
A.) A cross-town move.
B.) A broken camera lens.
C.) A two week trip to Italy.
Well, it just so happens that it’s D, all of the above.
But no excuses. I’ll interject a few of my upcoming posts with stories and recipes from my marvelous trip to Italia, etc. The last two months have been hectic, but with fall approaching, I feel the desire to get back into the swing of things. I find that when the summer heat finally breaks that there is a need to go back-to-school shopping, pick up a new trapper keeper and set the expectation for a productive year ahead. So here, in this first post after being away for too long, I am vowing to be more attentive to KT and to making more adventures in the kitchen.
To start off, « Read the rest of this entry »
July 8, 2010 § 1 Comment
I could never trade my school lunches for anything. I always had a little baggie of either carrots or sliced red peppers, and a fruit leather. For a sandwich, I would most often have a PB&J. But on rare, and extremely pleasant occasions, I would find 3 separate lunch items all neatly wrapped and waiting to be assembled. One would hold three slices of vine ripened tomatoes; another one would have three thick slices of milky white mozzarella, and finally in the last one would be a generous hunk of French bread with a very liberal spread of homemade pesto. On these occasions, not even a cafeteria-wide food fight could have parted me and my lunch.
In the summer months, when basil is in high supply, pesto is one of my favorite things to make. « Read the rest of this entry »
July 3, 2010 § Leave a comment
E. and I recently escaped to New York City for the weekend. E. went up for work and with the opportunity to join him, couldn’t turn down the opportunity.
We had a wonderful, whirlwind weekend. E. went to grad school in New York and wanted to show me the places he used to call home. The first day, started at about 4:00 with a lunch at Republic, drinks at Park Bar, and on to dinner with friends at Aqua Dulce.
At dinner, the topic of this blog came up in conversation. When I tell people about it, they sometimes ask me to make something with an ingredient they love. Here it was bok choy. I haven’t really worked much with bok choy and decided to step up to the challenge- food for thought.
June 22, 2010 § Leave a comment
Let me set the scene for you: Saturday morning, 10:43am. I am sitting on the couch next to E., we’re both in our pajamas and are tucking into our cheddar cheese omelets and pan seared sausage. I have my cup of coffee close by, half drunk and already starting to get cold. We are intently watching “Grill It!” with Bobby Flay.
As a side note here, this is an extremely common occurrence. We often sit, watching various shows on the Food Network while eating some meal or another. Our favorite
is “Back to Basics” with the one and only Barefoot Contessa. That day it happened to be her tomato salad with blue cheese dressing and crumbled blue cheese, but that is for another post.