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    • Got tomatoes?.....

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    •  9/2/2009 2:42:47 PM
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      All my life I thought I HATED TOMATOES.  I decided a few years ago that I was going to change my taste buds

      and assign a few specifically to these mysterious "fruits".  Little did I know that there are a huge variety of tomatoes

      out there, each with their own shape, size, and taste.  Who knew that when I even though I hated one type of tomato

      there was another species that I learned to adore (my fantastic litte grape tomatoes).  I planted 5 different plants this

      year, and can honestly say that I have finally develop a few more taste buds! 

      I decided that I wanted to DO something with all these fabulous fruits so I went out and bought a canner, and some

      jars.  I actually CANNED my first tomatoes last week!!! 

      That was exciting, but didn't give me the instant gratification that I was looking for.  So I decided to try cooking with them.

      We have a local restaurant here that sells the best roasted tomato soup I have ever had.  I made it my quest to duplicate it!

      I think I succeeded.  In fact, I loved my soup so much that .....that's right.....I canned it (well the first half of it).

      So this entry should probably have gone under the recipe section (where I will add it), but for now, here's what I came up with.

       

      I quartered 3 pounds of tomatoes , all different varieties, and placed them skin side down on a greased cookie

      sheet.  I then sliced up 1 red pepper and 1 sweet onion and added them to another cookie sheet.  I placed both

      cookie sheets into the oven and roasted them at 375 for 45 minutes.  I also put a bunch of garlic into tin foil (just

      to keep it from getting burned) and roasted in the oven as well  (I used about 20 cloves in the soup and saved the

      rest in the fridge).

      After they were done roasting I took 1 TBS of butter, 1 chopped carrot, and one chopped celery stalk and cooked

      them in a pot for about 5 minutes.  Then I added about 2 TBS of whole wheat flour along with 4 cups of chicken

      broth (could easily do veggie stock instead) to the pot.

      Then I added all of the ingredients from the cookie sheet (juice and all) to the

      pot.  Along with those I threw in 1/4 cup of sun-dried tomatoes.

      I let all this simmer for 45 minutes.

      After that I ran "batches" of the soup through my food processor (Vita-Mix would be great too) until it was the consistency

      that I wanted (a little smooth, and little chunky)

      I threw everything back in the pot, added 1/4 cup of cream (such a small amount could easily be eliminated to make this meal

      vegan) and a 1/4 cup of fresh chopped Basil,

      and my DELICIOUS soup was ready!

      I was worried that one of my daughters (who HATES tomatoes) would throw a fit.  She took a bite and said,

      "I don't love it, but I don't hate it."....Ahhh, success!  There is nothing better than watching your kids eat a meal

      that you know is really good for them (even if they don't know it themselves)!!!

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