I am not keen on drinking soups in restaurants. Reason being tasting the soup in restaurants and not liking them and the other reason is the fear of being served a vegetarian soup which was made with 'chicken broth'. No I am not kidding. It happened to me once. We went to a Thai restaurant from work and I took the vegetarian combo which had rice with some vegetables, a sweet and sour soup. When the soup was served, for some reason, I could smell something that just wasn't 'right'. When asked, the waitress said the broth was 'chicken broth'. So be very careful when you ask for soup and if you are vegetarian or vegan.
My younger one loves soup. Give some soup with bread or as is, she is a happy person. But, there is a catch to it. It has to have tomatoes in it. I have made pumpkin soup, butternut squash soup which, she will taste once and leave it. But serve her this tomato soup or Roasted red bellpepper soup, she is a happy girl. I made this especially for her and is the reason for not using any herbs.
One Year Back - Besan Laddoo (Sweet chickpea flour balls)
Plum tomatoes - 9 medium sized (See Notes)
Red Onions - 3 small diced
Apples - 2 medium cored, peeled and diced (See Notes)
Olive oil or any other oil - 2 TBSP
Garlic - 2 pods crushed
Vegetable broth - 2 - 3 cups
Salt - to taste
Crushed black Pepper - to taste
Hot sauce - 1 tsp or to taste
Blanch the tomatoes. Peel the skin. Set aside. In a pan, heat oil. When hot, add garlic. Let it cook, but not get brown. Add onions. Sprinkle some salt, crushed black pepper and let it cook. When onions are cooked, add apples, tomatoes. With the back of the spoon, crush the tomatoes and let them all cook till apples are soft and the whole mixture comes to a simmer. Turn off the heat.
When cool enough to be taken into a blender, blend it to a puree. Blend it to the consistency of your liking. I like the soup to be a little chunky but, my kids like them smooth. So, I blended them till it was a smooth puree. Return back to the pan. Add vegetable broth, hot sauce and bring it to a slow boil. Adjust the salt if needed. You could use the herb of your liking. I didn't since if some green 'thing' is floating, my kids would've a problem with the whole bowl of soup. Serve hot/warm with croutons or bread. I served with warmed whole wheat pita bread.
To use a shortcut, instead of blanching the tomatoes, you can use 1 can of 1lb 10 Oz can of peeled tomatoes. It will have about 1/2 cup of tomato juice in it and you can empty the whole can into the pot.
I like adding apples or potatoes (just 1 or 2) to thicken the soup naturally instead of adding corn starch or making a roux. Apples eliminate the need of adding sugar to the soup completely. I got this inspiration from Ina Garten's barefoot contessa show.
I am sending this to 'Souper Sunday' hosted at 'Kahakai Kitchen'.
I am also sending this to 'Winter Warmers' hosted at 'The Veggie Hut' along with Roasted red bellpepper soup.