Di’s Roasted red capsicum and tomato soup
This soup is a great starter for a dinner party. It is deceptively light despite its rich red colour and intense flavour. The red capsicums and Roma tomatoes need nothing else but a sprinkling of thyme, quality extra virgin olive oil and a good roasting to be really impressive. The very best results for this soup will be achieved when the capsicums and tomatoes are perfectly ripe and at the peak of their season.
- 1 kg red capsicums, cut lengthwise into eighths, seeds and membranes discarded
- 8 ripe Roma tomatoes, cut into thick slices
- 2 tblsps extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsps fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped (1 tsp dried)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 750 mls vegetable stock (homemade, of course!)
- Preheat oven to 220ºC, fan-forced. Line 2 large baking trays with baking paper. Arrange capsicums skin side up in a single layer on one baking tray, drizzle with half the olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Arrange sliced tomatoes on the other tray, drizzle within remaining olive oil, sprinkle with thyme leaves and season with salt.
- Place in oven and roast until tomatoes collapse, and capsicums are very tender and skins have started to blacken (about 20 minutes).
- Remove trays from the oven, place capsicums and tomatoes together with any juices into separate bowls, cover with cling wrap and set aside to cool. This will help soften the skins. When veggies are cool enough to handle peel skins from capsicums and tomatoes – they should come off easily (skip this step if you are pressed for time).
- Blitz capsicums and tomatoes in a food processor or with a stick blender until smooth. Pour the mixture into a large saucepan over medium heat, add the stock a little at a time until the soup reaches desired consistency and is heated through. Taste and season if necessary.
- Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil, a generous amount of cracked black pepper and top with fresh thyme or basil.