Tomato Soup with Fresh Tarragon


Today I sat at my computer procrastinating all day (really just staring at the screen with absolutely no thoughts flowing through my mind) except for the small break to take a shower and have some tea - I felt productive during those moments. I'm not sure if it's a post-holiday coma, a lack of iron, or that fact that I no longer need to make sentences longer than 2 words, but I'm feeling foggy. 

Baby Jaxon has been my companion for the past few days, hence the short sentences, and is undoubtedly my favorite little guy, and an absolute joy. Right now, his words consist of mostly nouns - farm animals, names, food, moon, stars, and Santa. It melts my heart when he says my name He-war. He's learning new words every day, and is now starting to string together a few in a row. It feels a bit similar to me trying to speak Spanish, although he is much more bold. I guess we tolerate his desire to say only a few words over and over, because he is just so darn cute, and we love him to pieces. I even tolerate his need to watch Elmo on my laptop whenever he sees it open, but to be frank, I've got no patience for Elmo.

Well, it's now a new year, new beginnings, and I really haven't made any new resolutions. I find myself more of a spontaneous girl, taking life one day at a time. I prefer to wake up each morning and make a few small resolutions for the day like; today I won't eat chocolate for breakfast, I will do yoga, I will love my dog, I will tell one person something nice about themselves. You can call them new day resolutions and If I succeed at fulfilling at least one, you can call it a good day. 

What I really like to do, is sit down and make a mental note of all the wonderful things to come. My sister is expecting another baby in March, and we are thrilled to have another addition to our family. Today, I was privileged enough to hear the tiny heart beat, and it was something special. 2013 is going to be a wonderful year filled with joyous occasions - new babies, good food, weddings, and travel. I'm also thinking it will be a year of delicious soups, because they have the ability to warm our hearts, and that is something we all desire. This recipe is a special one to me. It's been adapted from a small cafe in Victoria, BC. A cafe where me and Mr. H used to go. We'd bring our out-of-town guests, celebrate birthdays, fine occasions. Everyone left from their visit with a copy of the Rebar cookbook in their hands. Rebar, a pioneer in the whole foods revolution, like the Smitten Kitchen of food blogs. Their food is warm, inviting, healthy, and delicious. I make this soup recipe whenever I'm feeling a little nostalgic. It's really the most basic recipe. A few ingredients common to soup - butter, onions, garlic, and broth. But the three magic ingredients, tomatoes, tarragon, and chillies, combine to produce an exotic flavor.  Tangy, sweet, and spicy. Tarragon, with a flavor similar to black licorice, once mixed with tomato, transforms into something unimaginable. It's hard to put into words. 

TOMATO SOUP WITH FRESH TARRAGON RECIPE (print)
makes 6 - 7 cups
recipe adapted slightly from the Rebar Cookbook

INGREDIENTS
2 tbsp butter
1 sweet onion, chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp red chili flakes
1/2 cup fresh tarragon leaves, chopped
2 - 28oz cans of diced canned tomatoes, drained
6 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup cream
salt and pepper to taste

In a large soup pot on low heat, saute the chopped onions with 2 tbsp of butter until soft and translucent. Add the garlic, chili flakes, and the chopped tarragon. Saute for a few minutes.

Drain the canned tomatoes and add them to the onions, cooking on low heat for 10 minutes.

Add the broth, and bring the soup to a boil on high heat. Turn down the heat and simmer for one hour covered.

With an immersion blender, puree the soup until thin. Stir in the cream and let simmer until ready to serve. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Soup can be kept in the fridge for one week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

16 comments:

  1. Looks delicious! I've been trying to make some good tomato soups too that aren't overly tomato-y. Sadly my fiance is lactose intolerant so using cream is a big no-no. Sadly my favorite tomato soup (gazpacho) is one of his least favorites. Compromises!

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    1. You could always leave it out, or sub in some non-dairy creamer. Boo for intolerances.

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  2. I'll try without the cream, though cream makes everything taste so much better :)

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    1. Oh, I'm so happy that you are going to try it. Please let me know how it tastes without the cream.

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  3. We will miss you:(

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    1. I will miss you too, anonymous ;)

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  4. I found this wonderful "blog" recently and I am enchanted with your writing and photos. Thank you. What a pleasant way to begin my day. I am going to try this soup today and if maybe even the molasses cookies! Thank you!

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    1. Thank you so much for the kind words Lynn. It's means a lot to me. I hope you like the soup and cookies. They are some of my favorite recipes.

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  5. I love your photography! This soup looks yummy and simple. Looking forwad to reading more!

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  6. This soup sounds fantastic. I'll be making it very soon. Yum! Congrats to your sister! What a beautiful experience to hear the baby's heart beat :)

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  7. Absolutely stunning... words and photography!
    I can't wait to try this recipe. Congrats to your family on the upcoming addition as well :)

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  8. I have always been a little turned off by tarragon (and its black licorice flavor) but I am intrigued by this! Will have to give it a shot.

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  9. Thank you, this looks gorgeous. I think I'll try it although, again, without cream. If I find a good substitute/modification I'll let you know.
    I also have to say that you've done a much better job of photographing soup, I have a blog about soup (www.souper-woman.com) and you've inspired me to get more creative with my photos! :-)

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