Charred tomato and bell pepper soup
The monsoons are finally here with their gloomy skies and chilly winds and there’s nothing better than cosying up with a good book and a hot bowl of soup in this weather!
Sometimes I feel soups have come to be known as something you eat when you are ill or as bland diet food- and it’s a reputation that is unfair! Soups are great way to pack the nutrition from vegetables with deep flavours from herbs and spices. The key to a good deep-flavoured soup is not to boil the vegetables but roast them. Roast them in the oven until nicely caramelised, a little charred even, and then blend them up with their roasting juices. That is what we have done with the vegetables for this tomato soup. Tomatoes, onions and red bell peppers roasted in the oven until slightly charred for that deep smoky- almost-but-not-quite-burnt flavour with a generous heap of thyme and garlic. Your kitchen will be filled with warming, aromatic smells and you’ll be happy you’re stuck inside.
This soup isn’t strained and so is full of fibre, vitamin C and healthy fats. We love a good bowl of tomato soup and this is our special recipe which we’re sharing with you!
Makes two big bowls of soup
Tomatoes - 5 large ones
Cherry tomatoes- 1 handful (or use 2 extra tomatoes if you can’t find cherry tomatoes)
Red onions - 2
Red bell peppers - 2
Thyme sprigs - 5 sprigs
Garlic - 4 cloves
Salt - 1 tsp
Pepper - 1 tsp
Extra virgin olive oil - 1 tbsp
What to do
Preheat your oven to 180C
Wash all the vegetables. Cut the large tomatoes into quarters.
Slice the onions and cut open the red peppers, remove the stalk, seeds and white pith inside, and roughly chop into slices.
Place all chopped vegetables and the cherry tomatoes in a baking tray and mix in the thyme, salt, pepper, garlic and olive oil.
Place the vegetables in the oven for 25 minutes until the tomatoes and peppers char slightly- meaning there are some brown sections- and the onions caramelise into a golden brown colour.
Once your times beeps, check the veggies. Stir them to mix everything up and roast for a further 20 minutes.
Once they look lovely and caramelised (see photo for what we mean by this) allow to cool down. Remove any tough stalks of thyme, and then blend using a hand blender until smooth or tip the vegetables into a mixie, seal the lid carefully and pulse until smooth. Add a splash of water if it is too thick.
This soup can be heated up or keep it in the fridge if you want a cold gazpacho. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with some extra thyme leaves and a drizzle of olive oil and crack of black pepper.
Serve with slices of toasted sourdough bread on the side or cut them into small squares to eat as croutons.
Meal Prep Tip: As part of your meal prep, you could double these quantities to make a big batch and freeze in single portions. When you’re tired after a long day of work, you can thaw it, heat it up and you have a comforting bowl of soup ready without any hassle!