Thursday, December 26, 2013

Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup

Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup

This soup is one of our very favorites, yes the kids all love it too.  It is has so much flavor and just makes you feel so good!  This is so delicious with some crusty baguettes or the soft buttery holiday roll too.  Add a salad and you have one amazing meal!  I started with a recipe my friend Tammy Shinner gave me years ago and have been making this ever since!  Enjoy!

3 cups peeled, whole tomatoes with juice, canned or fresh
1/8 cup canola oil or olive oil
1 cup celery, finely chopped
1 cup carrots, finely chopped
1 onion finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ bay leaf
4 cups chicken broth
¼ cup butter
¼ cup flour
2-3 cups half and half, depending on desired consistency
1 teaspoon coarse salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
Garnish with grated Parmesan cheese

Puree tomatoes and juice in blender and set aside. In large pot, heat oil and sauté carrots, celery, onion, basil, oregano and bay leaf for 30 minutes or until vegetables are soft. Add tomatoes and chicken broth and simmer for 15 minutes. While soup simmers, prepare the roux.  Melt butter and stir in flour until smooth. Stir roux into soup and simmer 10 minutes.  Stir in half and half.  Bring soup to desired temperature and garnish individual servings with a few croutons and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.  Serve with plenty of crusty bread. If needed, thin pot of soup with more half and half, milk, chicken or vegetable broth to reach desired consistency.

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