Recipe for slow-roasted tomato and yogurt soup
What I love about soupmaking is that you can start out going in one direction, end up in another, and still achieve greatness. I had planned to make a yogurt and cucumber soup (and I will post that for you, next week), but all I found in the refrigerator were mealy, mushy cucumbers. Those went directly into the compost bucket! However, in the freezer I had a fresh batch of slow-roasted tomatoes, which inspired a completely different soup. I love the result, and not just because it's pink; the flavors of tomato, garlic, and thyme from my garden shine through. As a rule, I don't like recipes that require you to make something else first, but in this case, I really want you to make slow-roasted tomatoes and keep them in your freezer. You'll never buy sun-dried tomatoes again. This soup is best served very cold, so make it a few hours, or even a day, ahead.
Slow-roasted tomato and yogurt soup
Serves 4 as an appetizer or light lunch; can be doubled.
1/2 cup slow-roasted tomatoes (or oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes*)
1-1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt (I use 0% fat)
1 cup chicken stock, chilled, or water
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
Mild red pepper flakes, to taste (optional)
1 cup English (seedless) cucumber, cut into small dice
In a food processor or blender, chop the tomatoes until they are almost a paste (if you're starting with frozen tomatoes, this will be nearly impossible, so chop as finely as possible, and if you're using store-bought sun-dried tomatoes, add a tablespoon of the flavored oil). Add the yogurt and stock, and blend until smooth.
Pour the soup into a large bowl, and season with salt and pepper, and red pepper flakes if desired. Remember that chilled soups need to be a little bit overseasoned. Chill for at least 2 hours, or up to 6 hours. Taste and adjust seasoning before serving.
Right before serving, add the cucumber; if you add it earlier, the water from the cucumbers will dilute the soup.
*Note: my own slow-roasted tomatoes are made with garlic, thyme, salt and pepper, so they are richly flavored. If the tomatoes you use are not well seasoned, be sure to add a bit of roasted garlic, and some fresh thyme, plus a bit of the oil from the tomatoes, to the soup.