Friday, June 3, 2016

Slow Cooker Tomato Soup

The spring has been touch-and-go here in Seattle. One day is 80 and sunny, and the next is 55 with drizzle. On one such grey day, I had a hankering for soup. I've been meaning to make tomato soup for infinity, so I seized the opportunity. I was also hoping that making one last batch of soup would jinx the weather into turning warm again. Today's forecast is 79 and sunny, so I think it worked. You're welcome, Seattle.

Next time the sun creeps behind the clouds, pull your slow cooker out of its summer hibernation and make a batch of this Slow Cooker Tomato Soup.

Let's get (slow!) cooking!

Slow Cooker Tomato Soup
Adapted from America's Test Kitchen

2 tablespoons butter
2 (28 ounce) cans diced tomatoes, drained, juice reserved
1 onion, minced
1 cup chopped carrots
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons flour
3-4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup half and half
Chopped basil for garnish, optional

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add drained tomatoes, onion, carrots, brown sugar, tomato paste, and salt. Saute until softened and most of the liquid is evaporated, about 15 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Stir in 1 cup broth, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

Place tomato mixture into the slow cooker with reserved tomato juice, an additional 2 cups broth, and bay leaves. Cook on low for 4-6 hours, until tomatoes start to break down.

Puree with an immersion blender or in batches in the regular blender. Stir in half and half and remaining 1 cup broth if desired, depending on how thick you like your soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with basil.

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