I was poking around the garden and ended up walking out with an armful of fresh tomatoes, eggplant, and a stray zucchini. So now what? I’m a little tired of salads, even with vine ripened, sun-drenched, gloriously home-grown tomatoes – there’s only so many times you can do this before it is blah.
So I put some serious grey matter behind the thinking effort and figured out how to change up the every-day dinner routine. Why not make a garden puréed soup modeled after my favorite Sherry Tomato soup? I’m a sucker for Sherry Tomato Soup, one of my favorite being the version served at Biaggi’s Italian Restaurant in Bloomington, IL.
I started by roughly chopping everything, tossing it into a pan, pouring on some olive oil, a few pinches of salt and one of my preserved lemons. I roasted it all for about an hour at 400 before pulling it out for the first rough purée.
Once it had gone through the Ninja (a great appliance for bulk work but not great for fine purée) I put it mash through the strainer to get the seeds and big pieces of skin out. I adjusted the seasoning (a little more salt, the basil, some pepper, the sherry, and some extra olive oil) and put it on the stove top to simmer. I also went ahead and added enough water to lighten the consistency and bring it to a better soup-like state.
This cooked on very low heat for another hour. I adjusted the seasoning one last time (a bit more salt and some sugar to cut the high notes of the tomato and lemon). I pulled the other blender out and puréed it into its final silky, mouth-watering and soothing state.
I served some up for myself with a touch of cream and a pinch of Parmesan. Delicious!