So yes, only four days into the January Blog A Day and I skip a day. Ah, it was so bound to happen. But the day 14 topic is “Food”, and well that just happens to be my specialty!
I thought I‘d share a recipe with you guys that makes for the perfect way to warm up on a cold day. We here in TX have been experiencing some wintery weather in the 30’s & 40’s these past couple of days. And while most people may not consider that very cold, we Texans tend to panic when the temps fall below 50. So I’d say some comfort food is in order! And what says comfort food more than the classic Tomato Soup?
I made this Creamy Tomato Soup with Brown Butter Garlic Croutons last week and it went so fast there were hardly any left overs the next day. Even my dad, who is especially picky, ate two bowls of this stuff.
While winter has never been my favorite season, curling up in a warm blanket with a hot bowl of yummy soup makes these cold gray days feel cozy. This is comfort food at its finest!
Creamy Tomato Soup with Brown Butter Garlic Croutons -
(Recipe adapted from howsweeteats.com)
This soup is really flavorful and super creamy thanks to two kinds of cheeses, Mascarpone and Havarti. I had to leave out the Havarti though because my super market is just not cool enough to carry it apparently. But leaving it out didn’t really seem to make any difference.
While I liked the Brown Butter Garlic Croutons, I found they got a little bit too soggy in the soup. So I actually just prefer eating it with garlic toast instead. But the croutons do have a really lovely flavor though thanks to the brown butter and garlic. Everything is better with brown butter, in my opinion, as it gives things a warm, nutty, caramel taste. And browning butter is actually pretty simple so don’t be afraid to give it a try!
Spoon on a dollop of left over mascarpone and devour! Hope this soup keep you warm today! :)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 sweet onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 (28-ounce) cans whole, peeled tomatoes
4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
1/3 cup mascarpone cheese
1/3 cup freshly grated Havarti cheese
2 cups cubed whole grain bread
3 tablespoons brown butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
Heat a large soup pot oven medium-low heat and add olive oil and butter. Add onions, salt, pepper, seasonings and smoked paprika, then stir well to coat. Cook until onions are soft and translucent, about 5-6 minutes. Stir in garlic and tomato paste, using the back of the spoon well to mash the tomato paste and evenly distribute it throughout the onions. Cook for another 5-6 minutes or so, stirring occasionally, allowing the tomato paste to become golden in spots.
Add in both cans of the tomatoes (with juice) and the stock, bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let bubble for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. While the mixture is simmering, I occasionally mashed the tomatoes down just to make them easier to blend.
While the soup is cooking, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Brown the butter and let it sit for 2-3 minutes, then toss in the minced garlic cloves and stir for 30 seconds. Add bread cubes to a large bowl and pour the garlic/butter mixture over top, tossing well to coat. Place the bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes, tossing once or twice during cooking. If you desire them more golden, bake a little longer - just keep an eye on them.
After the hour is up, very carefully add the mixture to a blender (you will probably have to do this in two parts) and puree until totally smooth. Add back to the pot over low heat. Stir in the mascarpone and Havarti, stirring until it's completely melted. Taste and season additionally with salt and pepper if needed. Serve in big bowls with an extra dollop of mascarpone and bunch of croutons on top.