Extremely Interesting other Pages

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Making Healthy Tomato Basil Soup…For One.

How many times have you been talking to someone about cooking and you or they have said, “I just don’t like cooking big meals just for myself.  It’s much more fun and interesting cooking for others”.  While it’s true that cooking for others is a special joy –because I do like cooking for Sergio - cooking for your own DEAR and PRECIOUS self should be just as joyful. Don’t you still love that process of starting from nothing and ending up with a flavorful creation made from your own hands. Don’t you still enjoy sitting peacefully, even if alone, and enjoying the fruits of your labor and a quality homemade meal? Isn’t impressing yourself JUST as important? Or learning to make something new for your arsenal of go to recipes equally as satisfying?  YES, IT IS!
I cook for myself – even if I’m all alone now that Sergio is back in the States. Why should I eat boring, meaningless food just because another human being is not in the room?  I destroy my kitchen weekly even just for a party of 1.
On Monday, my newest creation was Homemade Roasted Tomato Basil Soup. LAWDY!- it was pleasurable and I have been eating it every day this week and it makes me happy – It tastes like restaurant quality soup and I am proud of this one. In fact it tastes almost exactly like Cosi Tomato Basil Soup, which I obsess over when I go home. It’s just a low-fat version since it doesn’t have cream.  If you are a tomato soup fan like me, you have to try it. It makes me want to say: Yay, soup's my favorite! (haha -if you read this post, that will make sense.) I got the recipe from the Food Network – It was one of Barefoot Contessa’s recipes. Here’s what you need:


  • 3 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons good olive oil (I used some good stuff Sergio bought from his friend who has an olive farm in Croatia..man that stuff tastes pure olives..oil.)
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onions (2 onions)
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (but I did not use butter at all..just olive oil)
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 (28-ounce) canned plum tomatoes, with their juice
  • 4 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 quart chicken stock or water


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Toss together the tomatoes, 1/4 cup olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread the tomatoes in 1 layer on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes.

Prep work - chopped onions, fresh thyme, garlic and basil

In an 8-quart stockpot over medium heat, saute the onions and garlic with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the butter, and red pepper flakes for 10 minutes, until the onions start to brown.


Add the canned tomatoes, basil, thyme, and chicken stock.

Add the oven-roasted tomatoes, including the liquid on the baking sheet. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.

 Then puree!  I used my immersion blender that my step mom bought me back in college – that thing has been the most useful thing ever – I don’t have large equipment since I tend to move a lot. It’s the perfect little portable device.  Looks like this:
image Nairobi-20120212-01768
VOILA! Then, just taste for seasonings and enjoy. If you want your soup a little creamy you can add a dollop of sour cream – so DELISH. And you made it yourself for yourself! or to share, which is nice too. ;-)


  1. I'm going to post on the Soup blog - cause it's my favorite - and i've been meaning to comment forever. i love it when you get on a blogging roll and share more of your adventures in kenya and cooking! gonna try this tonight - looks yummy!
    your LLL fan,

  2. I definitely enjoy a good tomato soup any day! and since I am also having partee of one here, i might just do my own concoction too:) can't wait until I taste your recipe, looks 'deli' :)

    p.s. photos and content are getting better by the day. Love you,

    1. you're not fooling anyone! i know who you are anonymous! George Clooney! stop leaving anonymous notes on my blog posts! hahaha Love you byu.


So..what do you have to say about all this?