A divinely delicious Oven Roasted Garlic Tomato Soup made extra special with the decadence of saffron and the warming smokiness of paprika. Utterly easy to make! Roast all veggies in a tray in the oven, blend the roasted veggies in the blender. Add spices and warm in a pan till bubbling.
Turning Oven-Roasted Veggies In A Soup
One of the easiest methods of making soup with a deeply complex flavour is to roast the veggies to golden perfection in the oven and then blend them to a smooth purée. Tomatoes are notorious for quadrupling their flavour when salted and roasted. And we do just that in this recipe. Marrying the umami flavour of the tomatoes with the sweetness of onion and fennel adds a beautiful flavour to the soup.
At the start of a meal-prep session, I often chop up some onion, fennel, tomato and garlic. I then salt the veggies, drizzle some olive oil and roast them in the oven in a rimmed tray for the better part of an hour. As the veggies roast, their flavour gets concentrated and any liquid released stews them further in the rimmed tray.
Just blending this beautiful mix of veggies is delicious enough. But then you can truly elevate the flavour by adding spices. Having become a huge fan of saffron in a tomato broth in this Risotto Soup recipe, I decided to play around with saffron in this hugely Mediterranean inspired soup as well. The result was absolutely incredible.
The Love Affair Of Tomato And Bread
When I was little, one of my favourite soups was a clear tomato soup that mum used to make. What made that soup really extra was the fact that she would deep fry triangle pieces of bread and float them in the soup. The crispy, brown, deep-fried bread would soak up all the soup and go all soggy, soft and delicious. When I scooped this soggy crouton in my mouth, the flavour was incredible.
It is no secret that tomato pairs really well with bread. I mean look at Pizza! So serving this rich Oven Roasted Tomato Garlic Soup with oven-roasted croutons is a no brainer. I will have the recipe for the Sourdough croutons up shortly. Having jars of croutons made from leftover stale sourdough is really lovely. The croutons make for excellent snackage and really help mop up this divine soup.
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- 6 (1 kg) tomatoes, large, quartered
- 1 brown onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 fennel bulb, coarsely chopped
- 5 garlic cloves
- olive oil, for drizzling
- sea salt flakes and black pepper, to taste
- 2 bay leaves
- 250 ml vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoons sugar, (extra teaspoon if required)
- pinch of saffron
- extra saffron, olive oil, black pepper and croutons, to serve
- Pre-heat oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced).
- Add tomatoes, onion, fennel and garlic to a large rimmed baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the pre-heated oven for 40-45 minutes until the veggies are tender and starting to brown. Remove from the oven. Cool for 10 minutes and then process in a blender or use a stick blender to blend to a smooth purée.
- Add smooth soup to a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan along with the bay leaf, vegetable stock, balsamic vinegar, sweet paprika, thyme, sugar and saffron.
- Bring to a gentle boil. Mix well, adjust seasoning and remove from heat.
- Serve hot with an additional sprinkling of saffron, black pepper, a drizzle of olive oil and croutons.