Friday, April 14, 2006

Roasted Red Pepper Soup

I've noticed that there's often a random series of coincidences that bring me to make a particular recipe. Take this hot roasted red pepper soup for instance. My friend Alanna from A Veggie Venture posted a recipe for Roasted Pepper Soup last week which reminded me of a red pepper soup I'd enjoyed at a restaurant in Palo Alto (I forget the name - something like Bravo!) when I first started dating my husband (14 years ago). Her post reminded me that I've always wanted to try and make that soup and now all I needed to do is find the right recipe.

I have a lovely bunch of leeks that I need to use and add Leek & Potato Soup to my list of "recipes to make this week", although, in the back of my mind, I'm not totally happy with this.

I make this wonderful Red Lentil and Rice Patties with Cilantro Sauce that I've been meaning to make for a couple of weeks and its phenomenal. So I start flagging recipes from The Healthy Hedonist by Myra Kornfeld and, you guessed it, I find this recipe for Roasted Red Pepper Soup that, with one minor modification, tastes exactly like the one I had at Bravo! (or whatever that restaurant was called). The recipe calls for leeks and, freakier still, Kornfeld specifies that the Imagine brand of vegetable stock is best with this due to its tomato base, which is exactly the brand I have open in my fridge.

So you see, I was destined to make this delicious Roasted Red Pepper Soup:

2 tbsp olive oil
2 cups diced leeks (white parts)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tbsp tomato paste
16 oz jar of roasted peppers (I used T. Joe's Fire Roasted), chopped, or 4 roasted red peppers
1 small potato, peeled and diced
4 1/2 cups Imagine vegetable broth
1 tsp red wine vinegar
1/4 cup half & half (my adjustment)

Heat the olive oil and cook the leeks until soft (8-10 mins). Add 1/2 tsp salt, the red pepper flakes, and tomato paste and cook gently for 3 minutes. Add the broth, red peppers, potato, and bring to a boil. Turn down to lowest heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Use an immersion blender to puree then add the vinegar and pepper. My adjustment: add 1/4 cup of half & half to make this creamier.

Kornfeld also includes a recipe for Tofu Basil Cream to serve with this, which I didn't make.

This soup is fiery, spicy, and delicious.

I love this cookbook!


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