Let’s put it this way: when I saw this post on Joanne’s blog, I knew I had to make the tomato soup she was talking about. I commented saying something like “looks delicious” and “can’t wait to make it”–but it was no mere blogger small talk. I actually couldn’t wait. I went to the grocery store that very day on my way home from work, picked up the ingredients I needed, walked in the door of my apartment, turned on the oven, and immediately started roasting those tomatoes.
I’ve never had such a fast recipe-to-table turnaround. I don’t know what about this soup (as opposed to all the other recipes I drool over on the internet) compelled me to make it so quickly, but guys–it’s truly amazing.
I’m thinking of writing “Call of the Tomato Soup”–kind of like “Call of the Wild” except . . . more different. With less stuff about wolves and more stuff about food.
This, my friends, is no traditional tomato soup. The Indian spices make it interesting and very flavorful, without detracting from its naturally comforting qualities. As long as you’re okay with a little spice (nothing unpleasant–just a delightful glow-in-your-mouth kind of level), I say make it! And fast. It’s a very low-effort meal with little hands-on time, and it’s also a great twist on what I’m sure for many of us was a childhood favorite.
1 ½ lb Roma tomatoes
2 tsp olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
½ large red onion
6 cloves garlic
2 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp chipotle chili powder
1/3 cup salted cashews
1 TBS tomato paste
1 cinnamon stick (1’’ in length)
1 cardamom pod, bruised
4 cups water
1/3 cup Greek yogurt
Optional: extra cashews and cilantro, to garnish
Here are the ingredients.
Except that I was in a hurry to get this soup moving, and in my frenzy I confused it with another recipe I was planning on making, and a few interlopers snuck in.
I x-ed them out for you. No hot pepper. No shallots. Those belong in the Tarka Dhal recipe I shared recently–also Indian, hence my confusion. While I’m giving orders out, I might as well order you to make that too, because it’s fab. Just fab, girlfriend. (Sorry, just channeling a little Beth Moore there)
Preheat the oven to 300 F. Line a baking tray with aluminum foil. Halve the tomatoes lengthwise . . .
. . . toss them with 1 tsp olive oil, sprinkle them with salt and pepper . . .
and place them cut side up on the baking sheet.
Roast the tomatoes for at least 1 hour, but longer if you have time. Use this hour to head down to your local beach and do a quick photo shoot with a beautiful Pilates instructor/dancer named Amie.* When you come back, the tomatoes will be roasted and also cool enough to handle. Remove and discard the skins.
*If you don’t have a beautiful Pilates instructor/dancer named Amie available to photograph, I make no guarantees. None at all. The batch of soup will probably be ruined, destruction and gnashing of teeth will ensue, etc. etc. I apologize for any inconvenience.
Chop the red onion (roughly, since it’s all going to get pureed anyway), and heat the remaining teaspoon of oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. When hot, add the red onion. Cook for 6-7 minutes, stirring frequently, until golden-brown.
While it’s cooking, mince the garlic and ginger.
Measure out the garam masala, coriander, and chili powder, because the spices are about to go in.
Add the ginger, garlic, spices, cashews, and tomato paste to the red onion.
Cook for a couple minutes, stirring constantly (to avoid burning the spices), until very fragrant.
Add the water . . .
. . . as well as the cinnamon stick and cardamom pod . . .
. . . and those lovely roasted tomato halves.
Scrape the bottom of the pot to release the brown bits.
Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes. Once that half hour is up, remove the cinnamon stick and cardamom pod, and blend the soup using an immersion blender.
Temper the yoghurt with a little hot liquid from the soup . . .
. . . then stir it into the soup.
Things are looking and smelling unbelievably good.
Taste the soup and season to taste with salt and pepper. You can garnish with extra cashews or a bit of cilantro if you’d like. I served it with some freshly baked Parmesan tortilla wedges.
Next time I plan on serving it with grilled cheese–maybe amped up grilled cheese with some melty slabs of Pepper Jack inside.
Or I might just use a nice mild cheese to counteract the spice of the soup.
In any case, what a total comfort food.
Hope you guys enjoy it as much as I did! Another awesome soup coming up next week.
Click here for printer-friendly version: Spicy Tomato Cashew Soup