Soup is one of my favorite foods.
A local restaurant has really great tomato bisque and I used to buy it every chance I got.
One of the themes of this blog is making restaurant quality dishes that are too expensive or only available some of the time.
This recipe for Tomato Bisque is the latter. The restaurant is on the same side of town that errands took me to 3 afternoons a week.
So each day I was going to be on that side of town I would call to see if Tomato Bisque was available.
Whenever it was I would buy a couple of quarts (it is that good) and I would be in soup heaven for a few days.
This “system” was working great when they made the soup about every three weeks.
Then they started making it once every 4-5 weeks, then 5-6 weeks and finally once about every 7-8 weeks.
The final blow was that they made it once every couple of months and they always sold out at lunch so none was available by the time I got to that side of town, late afternoon.
The last time it happen was a Friday afternoon.
I thought to myself, I have all day Saturday, I know my way around the kitchen and I am going to make my own Tomato Bisque.
It took a couple of tries to match their delicious soup but I finally got it!
It is rich, creamy and has a wonderful complex depth of flavor.
So if you like Tomato Bisque and you have some time on your hands, make this soup.
I am sure you will say; “Now That’s Good.”
Tomato Bisque Soup
4 Tbs of Butter
< 6 sprigs parsley
4 Tbs of EVOO
< 6 sprigs thyme
1 large onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 Tbs Real Bacon Bits 2 Tbs Fresh Basil or 1 tsp of dry
2 carrots, chopped < ¼ tsp of fresh ground nutmeg
2 stalks of celery, chopped
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
½ cup red wine
5 Tbs all purpose flour
6 cups low sodium chicken stock
2 large cans – No Salt Diced or Whole Tomatoes (can use 2 - 750 g boxes Pomi chopped tomatoes)
2 cups of heavy cream
3 Tbs No Salt Tomato Paste
4 tsp sugar (more or less to taste)
½ tsp black pepper or to taste
1 tsp salt or to taste
-Heat butter and EVOO on medium heat in large heavy bottomed pot or Dutch oven.
Add Bacon Bits, onion, carrot, celery, garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and fragrant about 8-10 minutes.
Tie the parsley, thyme and bay leaves together with kitchen twine to make a spice bundle.
- Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about 3 minutes.
Using a whisk, add the chicken broth and tomatoes whisking constantly, continue until mixture starts to boil.
Stir in the tomato paste.
-Add the spice bundle, sugar, salt, black pepper, basil, cayenne pepper, nutmeg and red wine.
Stir in spices and reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for about one and half hours.
Remove from heat and let mixture cool for about 1 hour.
-When soup is cool, remove and discard spice bundle.
Working in batches, transfer mixture to blender and puree until smooth.
Using a large sieve over a large bowl or pot, strain the puree mixture.
Return puree to clean heavy bottom pot and reheat over medium heat.
Whisk in heavy cream and heat thoroughly but do not boil.
-Serve with toasted bread, grilled cheese sandwich or crusty baguette.
Keeps well in refrigerator for several days. Makes about 10 servings.