October 10, 2011

Fresh Tomato Basil Soup

I love fall.

I can't say it enough! There's just something about this time of year that sings to me.


Crisp morning air

Leaves crunching under my feet

Warm colors

Cinnamon scents

Raking leaves

Pumpkins everywhere

We had warm fall weather this weekend but I'm still craving soup. This soup combines the flavors of summer with the cooler fall weather. Our tomato crop is starting to wind down, so we're eating them as much as possible before they're gone. The basil leaves are getting cold spots on them, so the first frost must be coming soon.

In other interesting news, one person found my blog by doing a google search for "пиво и девушка." I wonder what they were looking for...I hope they found it.

Hopefully you're enjoying fall as much as I am! Take some time to go for a walk and admire the changing leaves and breathe in the fresh autumn air. Then come home and warm up with the last flavors of summer in this easy to prepare soup.

Fresh Tomato Basil Soup
Serves 4-6

12-15 fresh tomatoes, any variety (should be 6 c once pureed)
1/2 c fresh basil, packed
1/3 c nutritional yeast
1 small onion
1 T minced garlic
1/2 c raw cashews
1/2 c water
1 T Italian seasoning
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp black pepper
sucanat, to taste (or substitute sugar)

Measure cashews and cover with water. Set aside to soak for 30 minutes or overnight. Quarter tomatoes and remove the white stem/core. Fill VitaMix/blender with tomatoes and process until smooth. If all of the tomatoes did not fit in the blender, hold the rest for later. There should be no skins or seeds visible at this point - they should be blended together with the juices. Add basil, nutritional yeast, onion, and garlic. Process again until smooth. Transfer to a medium pot and heat over medium heat. At this point, if there are any tomatoes remaining, blend those and add to pot. Drain the soaked cashews and blend with 1/2 cup of water in the same blender (no need to wash it in between) until it reaches a creamy consistency. Once the soup comes to a low simmer, add cashew cream, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Let cook on medium low for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to develop, stirring occasionally. Taste the soup. If it is bitter, add sucanat, 1 teaspoon at a time. Ladle into bowls and serve!

Note: If you do not have nutritional yeast on hand, substitute parmesan cheese for a similar flavor.

Note: I find that making the cashew cream is well worth the effort. Not only does it provide additional nutrients & healthy fats, but it also doesn't curdle like dairy would. You can use milk or cream, but be cautious and do not allow soup to boil.


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