Roasted Red Pepper & Tomato Soup

Winter has finally made it's appearance loud and clear. Temperatures have been steadily dropping last few days, evenings are chilly, mornings are frosty and my hot cup of cocoa is just that much more warming to body and soul - and that means one thing in our household, lots and lots of soups!

On many winter weekend our quick lunch is a pot of soup with some thick crusted sourdough bread brushed with olive oil and broiled at high temperature with just a rub of a fresh garlic clove. Throw in some salad (my favorites are couscous with butternut squash and dried cranberries salad or quinoa salad or a simple greens salad topped with some fruits and nuts dressed with an easy olive oil red wine vinegerate) and it's my perfect meal any time of day any season of the year..

This soup is my favorite and there are endless variations I keep trying on it. The recipe below is a slight adaptation of an old recipe I had posted earlier (but no new photos this time - what with a warm aroma of soup and garlic bread wafting your way sometimes all you can do is eat!). 

Recipe:(Serves 4-6)
edited slightly from Nov'2009 version here
2 fresh red peppers
2 tomatoes
1 jalapeno pepper
4 cloves of garlic - unpeeled
1/2 onion
Olive oil/salt/pepper
Pinch of thyme
Splash of heavy cream or whole milk (optional)
lemon juice
  1. Preheat oven to 420F
  2. Place the vegetables on a baking sheet. 
  3. Drizzle with olive oil, salt & pepper. 
  4. Roast for 30-40 mins (or until well roasted -- you will know by blackened patches of skin on red pepper and onion would be browned a bit). In between once after 20 mins of roasting flip the vegetables over for uniform roasting.
  5. Remove from oven and let cool.
  6. Next remove the skin of the red pepper and tomatoes (it should easily come off after roasting). De-seed the red pepper and tomatoes. Place all the roasted vegetables in a blender alongwith water enough to make desired soup consistency. 
  7. Puree the soup.
  8. The soup may have a slightly raw taste even after roasting. To get rid of the rawness I transfer the blended soup to a pot; add a dash of heavy cream or whole milk, add pinch of thyme (or to taste); adjust seasonings of salt & pepper and let it simmer for 10mins on medium heat. 
  9. Take the soup off heat; add lemon juice and serve with a nice toasted slice of french bread spread with some butter and garlic spread for an extra kick!