Creamy Tomato Soup with Almonds

 

Week six of working in a professional kitchen and I feel like I can relax a bit. The past month or so hasn’t been easy. During many a setback (breakdown), friends, family and coworkers have reminded me that it just takes a few weeks. A few weeks to adjust, fall into routine, beat the learning curve, etc. and, as usual, they were right. I can now breathe a bit and I don’t feel as overwhelmed by the long to-do lists and stress of a busy service.

I now look forward to making the day soup, a job left solely to me. I have total creative freedom to make what I like which is both daunting and exciting and has let me explore flavour combinations and fine tune a few fall-back recipes, one of which is this tomato soup. It’s simple, yet delicious, especially paired with grilled cheese or a slice of sourdough. Topping the soup with almonds adds texture and a toasted nutty flavour, but is optional. This soup is a puree, so don’t spend too much time cutting the vegetables perfectly, just try to have all of the pieces about the same size so that they cook at the same rate.

Creamy Tomato Soup with Almonds

Serves 4

2 tbsp olive oil

1 large white onion, sliced

4 large cloves of garlic, smashed

1 large carrot, roughly chopped

1 tbsp picked fresh rosemary, roughly chopped

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 can of crushed or whole tomatoes (28 oz)

1 tsp paprika

1/2 cup 35% cream or cashew cream (blend 1/4 cup soaked cashews, 1/4 cup water, 1 tbsp lemon juice, salt)

salt and pepper

1/4 cup toasted almonds, roughly chopped

Heat a large pot over medium heat, then add oil. Once hot, add the onions, garlic, carrots and salt. Cook until the vegetables have softened and taken on some colour, about 10-15 minutes. Add tomato paste, rosemary and paprika. Stir to incorporate and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add tomatoes and enough water to just cover everything (about 3 cups) and simmer for another 5-10 minutes.

Using an immersion blender (or a stand-up blender in batches) blend soup until smooth. Add cream and blend to incorporate.

Serve with toasted almonds.

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