I set out to create a cream of tomato soup, turning to two food52 recipes for inspiration. I wanted to employ Oui, Chef’s technique (from his Roasted Red Pepper Soup with Corn and Cilantro) of roasting the vegetables to create the foundation for a soup. And I was looking to riff on The Weary Epicurean’s Tomato Bisque. In her bisque, The Weary Epicurean has you sear halved tomatoes in a pan before lavishing them with butter and cream.
For my version, I roasted the tomatoes with a few cloves of garlic, then mashed the roasted tomato pulp with cream and cream alone. (Make sure you mash the tomatoes well, so you end up with a fine pulp, not chunks.) And then because I couldn’t stop myself, I made a rosemary-and-thyme oil to sprinkle on top. —Amanda Hesser
- Prep time 10 minutes
- Cook time 1 hour
- Serves 4
8 pounds beefsteak tomatoes, cored and quartered
6 cloves garlic
1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for the tomatoes
1 sprig rosemary
3 sprigs thyme
1/2 cup heavy cream, plus more if you like
Sugar, if needed
Coarsely ground black pepper
4 thick slices country bread, toasted and brushed with olive oil, for serving
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees and line two rimmed baking sheets with foil. Lay the tomatoes cut-side up on the baking sheets. Add the garlic cloves (with skins on). Sprinkle with olive oil and season with salt. Roast until the tomatoes are soft and caramelized, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- Add the ¼ cup olive oil, the rosemary and thyme to a small saucepan and place over low heat. Let warm until you begin smelling the herbs, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
- Peel the tomatoes and add the pulp and juices to a soup pan. Squeeze the garlic from its skin and add it to the pan. Place the pan over medium heat, and begin mashing the tomatoes with a potato masher until it’s pulpy, but not chunky (if you prefer to use a food processor, go ahead – just make sure you leave it pulpy). When the mixture is hot but not boiling, stir in the cream. Season to taste with salt. Add a pinch of sugar, if needed. Ladle into bowls and season with pepper. Sprinkle a little herb oil on top of the soup. Pass the toasts at the table.