Comfort Food

I am sick as a fish now ): But work still beckons although all I’d like to do is cuddle up with a good book and watch the world go by.

One of the happiest times in my life, so far, is the ability to take the time to enjoy aisles in the supermarket. My basket slung on my left arm, supported on my crooked hip as I stop and reach for various food items, peering intently at labels and making sense of un yaourt aromatisé or lait écrémé. Those times when I experimented with recipes and fed on feta on wasa crackers. Not forgetting Sunday mornings, slipping out the apartment at 8 in the morning, to greet the cheery farmers who opened up their vans to makeshift stalls, laden with the freshest (and my weekly staples) pommes rouges, epinards and chou-fleur! Oui, chaque Dimache, les même choses, s’il vous plaît!

As much as I crave my medium rare steaks, I enjoy my soups and broths. Exceedingly.
They definitely are my comfort food.
Good stews and soups, like this drool-worthy tomato ones by Helene of Tarteletteblog, make me grin and feel warm and fuzzy inside because they still remind me fondly of those surreal moments, and home.

Roasted Tomato Soup With Tomato Parmesan Croutons
Serves 4-6

2 pounds fresh tomatoes
4 garlic cloves (skin on)
4 small Vidalia onions, cut in half (or 2 regular onions)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons dried basil
2-4 cups water (depending on how thin/thick you like your soup)
Salt and pepper to taste

For the tomato parmesan croutons:
8 to 12 large cherry tomatoes
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon grated parmesan
Fresh oregano to garnish

Preheat the oven to 400F.
Slice the tomatoes in halves and place them on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil.
Place the garlic cloves and onion halves on a separate baking sheet and drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
Place both baking sheets in the oven and roast the vegetables until soft, about 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let cool.
Peel the skin off the garlic cloves and place with the rest of the vegetables, in a food processor. Add about 2 cups of water and puree until smooth. Add more water to reach your preferred consistency. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if desired.

For the tomato parmesan croutons:
Turn your oven broiler on high.
Thinly slice the cherry tomatoes (I usually get 3 slices per tomato) and layer on a baking sheet line with parchment paper. Sprinkle evenly with the dried oregano and parmesan. Broil for about 1 minute or until the parmesan starts to get golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.
To serve, place the soup in a large saucepan and re-heat quickly over medium heat right before serving. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the tomato parmesan croutons. Enjoy!


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