Recipe: Caracoli’s Roasted Red Pepper, Tomato and Basil Soup
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Spring may be a few weeks away, but hold on in there. Soups are the one of the best sources of nourishment to see us through these cold months and a great way to make delicious, natural ingredients go a long way whilst saving money.
This supremely comforting and tasty soup comes to us from Caracoli, the family of fantastic coffee shops and artisanal food stores scattered around Surrey and Hampshire. It can be made at any time of year and covering the roasted peppers allows them to steam, making removing the skins very easy. A good trick for dozens of other recipes!
3 large red peppers
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
550g chopped tinned tomatoes
½ vegetable stock cube dissolved in 500 ml water
10g fresh basil leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
olive oil and basil leaves to garnish
Preheat the oven to 180C. Cut the peppers in half, remove the seeds and stalk and place cut side down in a large roasting tin.
Roast the peppers for 45 minutes, or until the skin has started to blacken (they may need a little longer.)
Remove from the oven and cover the roasting tin with a clean tea towel or clingfilm and leave for 10 minutes.
Heat the butter in a large frying pan and cook the onion and garlic on a medium heat until they are softened, about 10 minutes.
Add the tomatoes and stock and simmer for 15 minutes.
Skin the peppers, and chop the flesh roughly. Add to the saucepan and simmer for a further 10 minutes.
Add the basil leaves. Season with salt and pepper.
Blend in a food processor or liquidizer until the soup is smooth. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Pour into warm bowls, garnish with a dash of olive oil and a basil leaf.
Caracoli Coffee Shops and Food Stores can be found at Alresford, Farnham, Guildford, Haslemere and Winchester.