Gluten Free Cream of Tomato Soup

As I’ve said in a previous blog, I am going to feature other bloggers once in awhile. This time its my  dear friend Laurie over at The Frugal Farmer . I am posting the recipe for  a soup I made for her, which she recently requested. It honestly is one of the best tomato soups I’ve ever made, and the only recipe I now use.

Yes, it is a little putzy, but it is well worth the effort. I double the recipe and freeze half before adding the cream. It’s then easy to defrost, reheat and add the cream and brandy. (I use brandy, but you can use sherry if you prefer)

The original recipe is not gluten free, but I have modified it to be gluten free by using my gluten free Artisan Flour Blend by Pamela’s. If you are not gluten intolerant, just use all-purpose flour.

Cream of Tomato Soup- Gluten Free.

2 (28oz) cans whole tomatoes packed in juice, drained reserving 3 cups of the liquid. Put a strainer over a bowl to catch the seeds and keep the juice, and carefully open the tomatoes, pushing out the seeds and juice.

1.5 tbsp dark brown sugar

4 tbsp unsalted butter

4 shallots, minced

1 tbsp tomato paste

pinch of allspice

2 tbsp gluten free all-purpose flour

1.75 cups low-sodium chicken broth

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 tbsp brandy or sherry

salt and cayenne pepper to taste.

Preheat your oven to 425deg, line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and place the seeded tomatoes in a single layer on it, sprinkle with the brown sugar and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes until they are beginning to color and the juices have evaporated. Peel the tomatoes off the foil and set aside.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the shallots, tomato paste and allspice. Lower the heat to low, and cook, stirring often, until the shallots soften (about 5-10 min). Add the flour and stir to combine, cook about 30 sec. Whisking constantly, add the chicken broth, reserved tomato juice and the roasted tomatoes. Cover the pot, increase the heat to medium and simmer until the flavors marry, about 10 minutes.

Strain the soup in to a bowl. Place the solids in a blender, add about a cup of the liquid and puree until smooth. Add this back to the rest of the liquid, and put back in the sauce pan. (Rinse or wipe out to ensure no chunky bits are left behind)

[soup can be frozen at this point]

Add the cream and brandy, season to taste and enjoy! (do not boil the soup once you have added the cream. To reheat, bring to a simmer, then serve)

Below is a photo of the leftovers from a reunion Christmas cookie decorating party for my oldest and her high school friends. I have not made this soup in awhile, so I don’t have a current photo. My apologies.

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Oh Mahi Mahi this was GOOD!

Oh Mahi Mahi this was GOOD!

I was already missing the tropical breezes, roaring ocean and balmy breezes a week after returning from our island visit. So to appease my yearning for anything to (as the Calgon commercials go) ‘take me away’, I pulled some Mahi Mahi out of the freezer and set to work creating something for dinner.

As I’ve mentioned previously, I have a well stocked fridge and pantry. I just love to cook and I love to cook spontaneously. I hate having my creativity limited by having nothing on hand. So, I keep a well stocked pantry, fridge and freezer.

This entire meal was ‘created’ using my Flavor Bible as a food/spice pairing guide, creative juices and what I had on hand. This is a ‘one pan’ meal, all cooked in stages in my trusty cast iron skillet.

First to be cooked were the potato medallions. I had duck fat in my fridge, and there is nothing better than potatoes cooked in duck fat! Seasoning them with salt and pepper, I let them cook until well browned and tender. On an oven safe plate they went in to a 200 deg oven to keep warm. I left the pan with that lovely seasoning and next;

I bloomed some Alleppo Pepper in the pan, adding a little olive oil, and a lot of garlic. I ‘shaved’ the brussels sprouts while the potatoes were cooking and sauteed them in the pan. When tender but still crisp, into an oven safe container and put in the oven. I wiped the pan clean with a paper towel.

Next came the fish, seasoned with salt and pepper, then pan fried with extra virgin olive oil.

While the potatoes and sprouts were cooking, I mixed up a simple salad in a bowl. Sliced radishes, cucumber and red bell pepper. I made a simple dressing of white wine vinegar, grapeseed oil (very healthy for you), a pinch of sugar, good healthy splash of Yuzu, salt, pepper and a handful of chopped cilantro.
Also while the fish was cooking I made a pistou of cilantro, salt, garlic and EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil). Simply chop the cilantro and garlic fine on a cutting board, add some kosher salt and with the flat side of your knife mash and combine by ‘smearing’ it on the board. Add to a bowl and add enough oil to make it look like the photo. It’s really a ‘to taste’ type of condiment.

The end result was heaven on a plate. And yes, for a brief moment, if I closed my eyes I could pretend I was back there in paradise.