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Author Notes: This is a spicy tomato soup that you can make on a whim and eat nearly as soon. (It's also, at its core, 5 vegan ingredients you probably already have.) Recipe adapted very slightly from Stir: Mixing It Up in the Italian Tradition (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009). —Genius Recipes
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
small yellow onion, peeled, halved, and sliced into 1/4-inch-thick slices
teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste -- we started with 1/2 teaspoon)
(28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes
cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
Freshly ground black pepper
Crème fraîche, for garnish (optional)
- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onions and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and very tender, about 10 minutes.
- Stir in the tomatoes and their juices, plus the water, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the flavors have melded, about 30 minutes. (If you're in a hurry, you can skip the simmer time -- just add a bit less water.) Add the basil, season with salt and pepper, remove from the heat, and let cool briefly, about 5 minutes.
- Set a fine-mesh strainer over a large, heatproof bowl. Using a blender, purée the soup in batches until smooth, removing the small cap from the blender lid (the pour lid) and covering the space with a kitchen towel (this allows steam from the hot soup to escape and prevents the blender lid from popping off).
- Pour the blended soup through the strainer, pressing on the solids with a rubber spatula or ladle; discard the solids. Taste the soup and season with additional salt and pepper as needed.
- Return the soup to the saucepan and reheat on medium low until hot. If you choose, serve topped with a tablespoon of crème fraîche.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!