Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad. Brian O’Driscoll
Michael brought home beautiful Roma tomatoes and for a cold day it was easy to come up with the obvious for a cold night’s dinner and this week at the cooking club it is pot luck time once again so many guest chefs to choose from I ended up taking something from a few recipes beginning with Ina’s version and taking it a bit further by roasting almost every veggie ingredient that I added to the pot.
Having roasted the ingredients earlier in the day I once again opted for the Instant Pot for a 15-minute high-pressure time with a 10-minute natural release. Simple roasted ingredients bring so much flavor to a simple dish. Michael actually had his first homemade crouton lesson and they were fabulous especially since I can’t stand hard crunchy croutons plus it gave to finish the soup.
Have ready a large sheet pan and drizzle some good olive oil, spread it around, and add…
3 1/2 pounds of Roma tomatoes halved seasoned with more EVOO, salt, and pepper
1 small whole garlic bulb cut in half and drizzled with a little EVOO
3 small carrots, cut into chunks
1 small sweet onion halved drizzled with EVOO, salt, and pepper, cut the root stem off before tossing it into the pot
8 sun-dried tomato halves
1 teaspoon dried oregano
a sprinkling of celery salt
at least 8 large basil leaves
1 large bay leaf
3 sprigs fresh thyme leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 pint heavy cream, more or less is fine
1/4 cup white wine (Pinot Grigio)
1 pod of concentrated chicken stock-2 1/2 cups water
previously roasted shishito peppers
Garlic parmesan croutons or make grilled cheese sandwiches
Kitchen tools… an Instant Pot, and a good stick blender.
The shishito peppers were roasted the day before so I just cut off the stems.
Roast the veggies in at 350º for about 30 minutes
Take the pan out of the oven and deglaze the sizzling hot pan with white wine, slightly elevate one end of the pan to allow juices to run to one end, scrape all the brown bits on the pan.
Drizzle about 2 teaspoons of EVOO into the IP, I had some lovely Tuscan herb olive oil and used 1 teaspoon along with the EVOO, set the pot to sauté on normal, stir all of the veggies into the pot heath through then add the chicken stock pod, herbs, seasonings, and water. Seal the IP, close the vent, and set for 15 minutes at high pressure. When the timer goes off allow a natural release for at least 10 minutes.
Fish out the bay leaf, grab the stick blender, and whiz up the entire contents until smooth, taste for seasoning, and finally add heavy cream as much or as little as you like, me 1/2 a pint was enough.
Garnish with more basil and croutons or serve with sandwiches.