July 26, 2016

Tomato Soup

Tomatoes, pictured here in a rare mating display
The tomato gets a rough deal. Traditionally, it's the thing we throw at people to tell them they're terrible at life, and should get off the stage. Or, alternatively, we'll mash it up with about 1,000 other things into a sauce so you can barely even tell it's there, and then combine that sauce with the things we really want to eat, like pasta, or chicken, or the still-beating hearts of our enemies, or fries (Though some tomato sauces do rise to the occasion). Rarely do we let the tomato be the star of the show. Tomato soup is no exception. It's pretty much used as a condiment for grilled cheese sandwiches. Which is reasonable. Grilled cheese is delicious, and can help make anything taste awesome. But if you make it right, the tomato doesn't necessarily need a crutch. It may suck, but it will not get off the stage. Just like me at my 5th grade talent show.


28 oz. can of Crushed Tomatoes
3 standard-issue Tomatoes
1 standard-issue Onion
3 Carrots
2 cups Vegetable Stock
1 cup Water
2 cloves Garlic
2 TBSP Olive Oil
1 TBSP chopped Rosemary 
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper 
An unspecified amount of Salt

The first thing you're gonna need to do is chop up your onion and carrots. You don't need to worry about getting them into tiny uniform bits, because we're gonna blend the crap out of the thing later, but if the demons in your head tell you otherwise, go nuts. Heat up your oil in a pot, and sauté your chopped up onion and carrots along with a gentlemen's pinch of salt. While that's cooking, it's a good time to get to know your tomatoes way better than you want to. You're gonna cut out the core and the seeds. Those of you who have seen the inside of a tomato before might be wondering "how?" The answer is "messily." Because tomatoes are goopy nonsense on the inside, and at the slightest pressure they'll squirt their insides all over the place. Kind of like people. Once you're done, and you can't un-see the things you've seen, chop what's left of your tomatoes into chunks. For those of you who read this before starting to cook, let your onions and carrots cook for about 6 minutes over medium heat before adding in your tomatoes along with another pinch of salt. For those of you cooking along as you read it, you probably should have added in your tomatoes a long time ago. Also, your kitchen, and other important parts of your household, may be on fire
The rosemary sprig is optional, unless you happen to be
classy as hell, like me. 

Let that whole mess cook down for another 3 minutes before adding in your rosemary, along with the garlic which you've taken the time to chop into itty bits. Cook for another minute before adding in the rest of your ingredients. Bring the whole thing up to a boil, cover it so it can't escape, and then simmer it for 1/2 an hour. Now it's time to blend it. I prefer lightly blending it so you've got a slightly chunky texture. But if you decide you know better than me, go nuts and follow your heart. I'm sure you won't regret this decision forever. And that's all there is to it! Delicious, mildly spicy tomato soup. So the next time you feel like throwing tomatoes at some hack comedian, make a pot of this soup, and throw that at him instead. 

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