“Baby it’s Cold Outside”

On our farm in Colorado, I get cold. Like REALLY cold. With rheumatoid arthritis, cold is not a good thing. It causes me to be really stiff and ache. I often feel guilty about it because there are lots of tasks that need to be done on the farm and I don’t want anyone to feel like I “can’t” do something because of RA. I may be slow when I move… I may need someone to open a jar for me or manage a button for me… but I strive to be as useful and helpful as I can when it comes to farm chores. My wonderful husband, Keith, does just about anything in his power to keep my joints warm.

Well this past weekend, we got a nice dose of Winter. Like most of the country, we were hit with the arctic cold front. It was COLD. It was snowing when I took Tay to school on Friday morning and had to cover all of our outdoor garden containers so we could try to squeeze a few more veggies from this season. Keith was WONDERFUL and built a fire for me in our wood-burning stove. It was a true act of selflessness. Our home is very well insulated and stays quite warm… especially if I’m cooking and the oven is on. But, because he is wonderful, he lit the stove, stoked it, and stripped down to a t-shirt and jeans so he won’t sweat too much.  🙂 Such a sweet man.

Cold weather always makes me want to cook soup, stew, or some other warm and cozy meal for the family. So… I decided to make some soup… Tomato soup, to be exact.  I was fortunate enough to have a bowl full of homegrown tomatoes that I could use… but this simple recipe can be made with canned tomatoes too! It’s so easy and SO yummy, you’ll never go back to that red and white can of condensed soup again.

Roasted Tomato Soup

  • 2 cups diced tomatoes (fresh or a couple of cans diced tomatoes, drained)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth or stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 400°. On a baking sheet, combine the  tomatoes, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, and the salt and pepper. Toss the ingredients to coat evenly and spread them in a single layer. Roast the tomatoes until they are shriveled with brown spots, about 35 to 45 minutes. They will look a little sticky… it’s exactly what you want!
  2. In a large pot, heat the butter and the remaining tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and sauté until softened, about 6 minutes. Add  the broth,  thyme, bay leaves, and the roasted tomatoes, including any liquid on the baking sheet. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 40 minutes. Remove the bay leaves.
  3. Use a stick blender or food processor or regular blender (be careful) and puree the soup until it’s smooth. Return it to the pot and stir in the cream. Without letting the soup boil, warm it over medium heat, stirring often, until steaming. Add salt and pepper, if necessary. (If you are using fresh tomatoes, you’ll probably want to strain your soup at this point. Since your tomatoes aren’t skinless, you’ll want to strain them out of there.)I serve this soup with good ole grilled cheese sandwiches. But, you could serve this soup by itself with cheese, goldfish crackers, sour cream, whatever!

    I know you’ll love this soup! The next time you don’t know what to serve… and it’s a very blustery day… run to the pantry, grab a couple of cans of tomatoes and whip it up! You won’t be disappointed!

    -Deena

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