Recipe for cream of tomato soup with basil and corn
Today's soup comes to you courtesy of ingredients that were left from other events and made their way to my kitchen. From a cooking class to benefit Drop In & Decorate, I had an extra half-pint container of heavy cream, and some passable but not glorious fresh basil. And from my friend Candy's pantry, which we emptied last week when she moved to New Mexico, I inherited a can of San Marzano tomatoes with basil. Tomato, basil and corn is, to me, the combination of foods that personifies summer. It's anything but summer here in New England, yet with all of the key ingredients, I managed to coax the flavor of August out of my soup pot. The actual color is a bit more pink than it looks here. I think you'll like it.
Cream of tomato soup with basil and corn
1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 leeks, trimmed, chopped (white part only) and washed
28-oz can whole tomatoes, with their juice
6 slow-roasted tomato halves*
A pinch of sugar
1/4 tsp piment d'Espelette (optional)
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
2 cups frozen organic corn kernels
1/2 pint heavy cream
3-4 Tbsp roughly chopped or julienned fresh basil leaves
In a 5- or 6-quart Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the leeks and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until just wilted but not browned. Stir in the canned tomatoes, slow-roasted tomatoes, sugar, piment d'Espelette, salt and pepper, plus 3 cups of water. Bring to the boil, then reduce to simmer and cook, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
Remove the pot from heat and puree the soup with an immersion blender (or let cool slightly and process in batches in a food processor or stand blender).
Return the pot to the stove, and stir in the corn, cream and basil leaves. Cook on the lowest heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste, and adjust seasoning as needed with salt and pepper. Serve hot, or let cool to room temperature, refrigerate, and serve cold.
*If you haven't made your own slow-roasted tomatoes with garlic and thyme, you can substitute oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, plus 2 cloves of roughly chopped garlic and 1/4 teaspoon of thyme leaf.