Welcome back to part 2 of my fresh tomato soup series! Today’s recipe is for an easy roasted cherry tomato soup. It’s not too much of a departure from part 1 for a basic tomato soup recipe (though parts 3 through 6 will be VERY different) but I wanted to feature a recipe that exclusively uses fresh cherry tomatoes.
Because right now, from late summer into early fall, there’s so many growing in such abundance that it’s nice to learn ways to use them beyond just, well, you know, putting them on salads.
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Soup is a much more economical way to use them! And you can freeze soup for those long winter months.
Salads not so much.
I also wanted to make a roasted cherry tomato soup recipe that features my absolute favorite type of cherry tomato.
Sungold cherry tomatoes.
Those bright golden orange beauties are bursting with a sweet juiciness that makes them a natural fit for tomato soup recipes. And when you roast them, that delicious sweetness deepens even further.
In late summer they’re so bountiful that a thriving patch will have just as many falling to the ground as ripening on the vine. And they just keep coming and coming and coming, for weeks on end, sometimes even well into October.
If you’ve ever grown them in a garden you know what I’m talking about.
Supermarkets should be your last resort. Those tiny little pint-sized containers in supermarkets won’t nearly make enough! They also may not be as sweet and ripe as locally grown organic ones.
Also, cherry tomatoes are not as conducive to canning as other types of tomatoes. By “canning” I don’t mean home preserving but rather the tinned tomatoes you’ll find in supermarkets.
This is why a roasted cherry tomato soup is fairly unique. You have to make it when they’re in season.
I recommend finding a good local pick-your-own organic farm where you can load up. I’m lucky that my local veggie CSA has this option. Of course, growing them yourself is the best option. Otherwise, local farmers’ markets and farm stands are good options too.
This time of year, almost everyone is selling them!
For a 4-person serving you’ll need 2 quarts of sungold cherry tomatoes. Double up those amounts if needed. And by the way, you don’t have to use sungolds. Use any type of cherry tomato you want. There are many varieties in many shapes, sizes, and colors.
Lay the tomatoes out in a roasting pan (you’ll probably need two) and add the onion and garlic cloves. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Roast at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes until browned but not charred.
Now just a note about roasting the tomatoes in your oven.
I used two roasting pans because two quarts of cherry tomatoes didn’t fit in one pan. I set one on the top rack and one on the bottom rack in the oven.
Here’s the pan from the top rack…
That was after 40 minutes. They browned nicely but in retrospect, I would’ve let them go a tad longer. The tomatoes in the other pan roasted at a much faster rate. This can easily happen when you’re roasting things in your oven on different racks at the same time. The heat distribution is not always evenly distributed.
I removed the tomatoes from the bottom rack after about 30 minutes because they were much more browned. You can see evidence of this in the cover pic (at the top of the post) of the three soups. The soup on the upper right was made from the deeper roasted tomatoes and thus has a slightly darker color. As a result, it had a deeper, more satisfying flavor.
So just watch the roasting process carefully! Get the tomatoes nice and deeply browned but not charred for the best flavor.
The rest of the roasted cherry tomato soup comes together very easily. Because once you roast the tomatoes, you’re really almost done.
Now, combine the roasted tomatoes in a stockpot with chicken broth and simmer it over medium heat to medium-high heat for about five minutes. Then, just add any herbs you want, and puree it all with a hand-held immersion blender.
For the fresh herbs, I’d recommend about 1 cup of loosely packed leafy green herbs. That would be your fresh basil, sage, and parsley.
For herbs such as thyme and rosemary, I’d recommend about 4 to 5 sprigs.
Salt and pepper, to taste. That’s really it!
This step is totally optional. But you can easily make this a creamy roasted tomato soup by adding heavy cream or creme fraiche.
Start with 1 cup of heavy cream. If using creme fraiche, add a little less. Stir it in well. And taste it. Slowly add more until you’re happy with the result.
I find that somewhere between 1 and 2 cups is about right.
Craig Fear is the creator of Fearless Eating and the author of three books, The 30-Day Heartburn Solution, Fearless Broths and Soups and The Thai Soup Secret. After years helping clients with digestive issues, Craig decided to pursue writing full-time. He intends to write many more books on broths and soups from around the world! Click here to learn more about Craig.