"Come said the wind
To the leaves one day,
Come o'er the meadows and we will play.
Put on your dresses scarlet and gold,
For summer is gone
And the days grow cold."
A child's song from the 1880s
Today is the last day of summer. Shadows already grow longer. A few trees are beginning to don their fall wardrobe. Asters and mums are showing off in the neighborhood. "Ready to Pick" signs are displayed at local orchards. Even though it means saying goodbye to fresh tomatoes, I welcome the autumnal equinox with soup pot on the stove and rake in hand. Bring on the fallen leaves!
It was cool enough by suppertime for us to enjoy this tasty soup yesterday. I made a triple batch and stashed two meals in the freezer (before adding the cream). I hope you'll give this recipe a try.
Happy autumn to all of you!
End of Summer Tomato Soup from Friends and Family Cookbook and me
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium-sized carrots, peeled and chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 medium-sized onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 tsp dried basil
3 large tomatoes, peeled (seeded if you like) and chopped
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup half and half (it is the beginning of fall--celebrate! or use milk)
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh basil for topping
1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the carrots, celery and onion, stirring often until softened--about ten minutes. Add the garlic and basil and cook another minute. Add the tomatoes and the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, loosely covered with a lid, for another 25 minutes.
2. Puree the soup in the saucepan using an immersion blender (a food processor works too).
3. Return to the heat and stir in the half and half.
3. Ladle into warm bowls and top with fresh basil.