Monday, March 1, 2010

Cream Of Tomato Soup

2 28-ounce cans of whole tomatoes packed in juice, drained, 3 cups of juice reserved, tomatoes seeded
1 1/2 T dark brown sugar
4 T (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
4 large shallots, minced (about 2/3 cup)
1 T tomato paste
pinch of ground allspice
2 T unbleached all purpose flour
1 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 T brand or dry sherry
salt and pepper to taste
cayenne pepper

Preparing the soup:
Adjust the oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees F; line rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spread tomatoes in single layer on foil and sprinkle evenly with brown sugar. Bake until all liquid has evaporated and tomatoes begin to color, about 30 minutes. Let tomatoes cool slightly, then peel them off of foil; transfer tomatoes to small bowl and set aside.

Heat butter over medium heat in medium nonreactive saucepan until foaming, add shallots, tomato paste, and allspice. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally until shallots are softened, 7 to 10 minutes. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, until thoroughly combined, about 30 seconds. Whisking constantly, gradually add broth; stir in reserved tomato juice and roasted tomatoes. Cover, increase heat to medium and bring to boil; reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, to blend flavors, about 10 minutes.

Strain mixture into medium bowl; rinse out saucepan. Transfer tomatoes and solids in strainer to blender; add 1 cup strained liquid and puree until smooth. Place pureed mixture and remaining strained liquid in saucepan, add cream, and heat over low heat until hot, about 3 minutes. Off heat, stir in brandy or sherry; season to taste with salt and cayenne and serve immediately.


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