Rustic Roasted Heirloom Tomato Soup with Balsamic Vinegar and Blue Cheese

By • July 30, 2010 • 10 Comments

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Author Notes: I recently spent a week in New Mexico taking a cooking class on authentic southwestern cooking with Jane Butel. It was so much fun and really educational. Now I'm in the midst of looking at ways I can incorporate the things I learned into my cooking - so you might be seeing a fair amount of southwestern influenced recipes from me for awhile. In this recipe, I roasted a mixture of several kinds of heirloom tomatoes and separately roasted a few poblano peppers. Additional flavors come from chopped basil, onion, balsamic vinegar and blue cheese. I finished it with a sprinkle of finely minced basil leaves and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar-blue cheese. You can put this through a food mill, or even a blender, to get a smoother soup, but I prefer a more rustic texture I get with my food processor. You can spike up the heat or calm it down by how many roasted poblano peppers you put into it. Adding just one pepper gives the roasted pepper flavor without any heat; four peppers make a pretty spicy soup. It's good hot or cold, but you'll need less salt if you're serving it hot.TheWimpyVegetarian

Makes 7-8 cups

  • 5 pounds mixture of heirloom tomatoes, big juicy ones are best!
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 3 poblano peppers
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped basil, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon sherry
  • 1 ounce crumbled gorgonzola blue cheese, divided
  1. Preheat the oven to 300F. Slice the tomatoes into 3/4" thick slices, toss with 1 tablespoon garlic, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon each of salt, pepper and sugar. Place on cookie sheets and roast for 2 hours, or until they are puckered all around the edges.
  2. Roast the poblano peppers until the skins are blackened. Remove from the oven and place in a bowl of ice water for 3-4 minutes. This will make peeling the thin skins much easier. Peel, remove the seeds and coarsely chop. Set aside.
  3. Saute the onion, red pepper and remaining tablespoon of garlic in the remaining olive oil until soft. Add the roasted tomatoes, roasted peppers, basil and remaining salt, pepper and basil. Cook for about 10 minutes to mingle the flavors and break up the tomatoes.
  4. Pour the soup in batches into a food processor and process to get the consistency you want. Pour the soup back into the pot. Add 3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, 1/2 ounce of blue cheese, and sherry and stir in to at least partly melt the blue cheese.
  5. Place the rest of the balsamic vinegar in a small pot on the stove and heat. Add the remaining blue cheese and melt. Drizzle on top of the soup. Sprinkle with some finely chopped basil.
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Tags: Summer, Vegetarian

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about 4 years ago lastnightsdinner

This is just lovely.

Me

about 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

Thanks lastnightsdinner!

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about 4 years ago gingerroot

Yum...this looks so delicious! I've been on a blue cheese kick over the past few weeks and I'm always looking for good tomato recipes (especially soup!). I'm saving this...can't wait to try it.

Me

about 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

Thanks gingerroot! I love blue cheese too. Just be careful not to add too much of it or it will overwhelm the tomato flavors. I made your cherry sorbet last week again and just love how refreshing it is!

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about 4 years ago gingerroot

I'm so glad you are still enjoying the cherry sorbet. Thanks for the blue cheese tip - I actually made WinneAb's Heirloom Tomato, Basil and Goat Cheese Pie tonight for a summer gathering and subbed mascarpone with just a touch of mild blue cheese (I did not have goat cheese on hand) and it was delicious.

Me

about 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

You're welcome! I'm glad it worked so well. I want to try WinnieAb's pie too and love your idea of mascarpone with a little blue cheese.

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about 4 years ago dymnyno

My printer is on too...I love Sante Fe, the marketplace, the galleries, and the great restaurants!! I love the roadside roasted pepper stands....those are the best peppers that I have ever tasted. You soup reminds me of all that I love about about that area.

Me

about 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

I love that area too! I had some roasted peppers at the Santa Fe farmers market last year that were just killer! I try to get out there on one pretext or another once a year. Thanks so much for your kind words!

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about 4 years ago Lizthechef

Already turned on the printer before I finished reading your wonderful recipe! So happy to get a taste of your New Mexican cooking class...Wonder how this would be chilled, perhaps minus the cheese?

Me

about 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

Thanks! It would be just fine without the blue cheese - no worries there. If you wanted to substitute a different cheese you could try parmesan, pecorino or even try a little Mexican cojita cheese. I also had it without any cheese at all, and it still tasted great to me.