Monday, January 31, 2011

Friendship January Recipe

Our January recipe will warm your soul.  Nothing is better than a simple bowl of delicious soup!  Sometime it's those simple meals shared with family or friends that are the most satisfying. 

The base recipe came to me from a friend, then I tweaked it a bit.....(I just can't restrain myself when I am in the kitchen.)  Hope you enjoy!

Creamy Tomato & Basil Bisque' Soup

1/4 Cup butter (yes it needs to be butter)
1 med. onion, diced
3 celery ribs, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 Cup flour
6 Cups chicken broth
3 cans (14.5 oz size) Italian Style stewed tomatoes w/basil
1 can (6oz.) tomato paste
1 Tbsp sugar
2 bay leaves
2 tsp. dry basil
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
3/4 Cup Whipping cream
salt & pepper to taste
croutons and fresh parmesan cheese for topping

Melt butter in a heavy stock pot, over med. heat.  Add onion, celery, carrot & garlic.  Cook until very tender. 

Whisk in flour over low heat.  Add broth & whisk while adding.  Add in the 2 cans tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, bay leaves & basil; bring to a simmer for about 15 min. whisking occasionally.  

Remove bay leaves. 

In blender, carefully puree' the soup & set aside.  Into the stock pot add remaining can of tomatoes, chunk and mash them up, then add the soup puree into the stock pot.

Slowly stir in cream & simmer for 10 min. then add the Balsamic vinegar.  

Season to taste.  Garnish with croutons and fresh shaved parmesan cheese & Basil sprig.  Now here is a little slice of heaven!