Thursday, December 2, 2010

Tomato Orzo Soup

Even when nothing else will do, soup comes to the rescue.  Soup always seems to hit the spot, and the "Tomato Orzo Soup" (page 166) is no exception.  Growing up, I ate a lot of Campbell's Tomato Soup, and for the longest time it never occurred to me that one could make something at home that would be as good as what came out of that red and white can.  But in this recipe, Campbell's has met its match, and in my opinion, lost the contest.  The combination of fresh and canned tomatoes, tomato paste, onion, celery, broth, and garlic, simmered on the stove, and then pureed, is the basis of the soup.  Add soy milk to this to add a little creaminess, serve on top of cooked orzo, top with fresh basil, and you've got a bowl of delightful, warm, elemental Soup.

I did make a couple of changes to this recipe.  First of all, keeping with my goal to keep these recipes oil free, I sautéed the onion in a little broth.  I was unable to find whole wheat orzo, so I did end up using the white flour version.  I added the garlic to the blender as I was pureeing the soup so as to retain more of the garlic flavor (as opposed to cooking it in from the beginning).  And, because I could tell this was going to be somewhat thin, I added ¼ cup flour to the soup as I was blending in up, then stirred it over heat until it thickened up.  It was at this point that it started to remind me of the good old Campbell's Soup days. Good warming food for when it's cold outside.

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