Here we go, the obligatory “making something I’ve never made before” post. Get ready though, it’s going to be awesome. I’m a huge Barefoot Contessa fan. I could watch hours and hours of her show. I don’t know why. She’s really not that great, but there’s something about her, her house, and her cooking, that just leaves me wanting more. There are a lot of her recipes that I’d love to make, but her Tomato Basil Soup looked especially delicious last night.
I made myself go to Giant after work to get the necessary items. $35 later, I had a ton of tomatoes, a lot of basil, and a fresh out of the oven baguette from the bakery section. I proceeded to eat over half of the baguette on the way home, but that’s another story for another day.
First off, here are my ingredients: (Please note the “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” cookbook to the right- never been cracked open. Whoops.)
I started out by chopping the tomatoes an half and mixing them with salt, pepper, and olive oil.
Then I roasted them at 400 degrees for 45 mins.
Next up, I sauteed the onions and garlic in olive oil and butter. Sounds pretty delicious to me.
Then I added the tomatoes, chicken stock, and massive amounts of basil to the pot. This took 4 cups of basil. She’s not playing around, but trust me, it’s good.
Then I let it simmer for 40 mins. Meanwhile, I ate another third of the baguette and watched Hoarders. Yes, I’m that awesome.
Now you’d think it would be done, ready to eat. But nope, Ina decided to add a little gourmet twist and employ a food mill. Does anyone know what a food mill is? Strangely, VERY strangely, I have one. I think somehow I got it as a hand me down from my mom? Clearly I’ve never used it, so I pulled it out, ready to finish this up.
Wellllll, epic fail. The tomatoes and basil wouldn’t really go through the food mill, so I was left with a little bit of tomato juice in the bowl, and all the good stuff still left in the food mill. So I ditched that idea and went for the classic blending the soup with a handheld blender idea. This is how THAT worked out:
The picture does not fully account for the amount of tomato juice that landed ALL over my kitchen. After about 10 minutes of cleaning up, the soup was ready to devour.
Man, was it good. Worth the work, and the crazy mess that took me at least 30 minutes to clean up. I HATE canned to tomato soup, it makes me cringe just thinking about it, and this was a far cry from a can. Barefoot Contessa, you made me an even bigger believer than I thought I could be.
So, all in all, it was worth the 2 hours of prep and cooking, the 30 mins of cleanup, and the $35.00 for ingredients. You only live once, right? Even better, I have at least 5 days worth of leftovers.