I did cheat a little bit, because even though it's tomato season, I had absolutely no desire to blanch and peel fresh tomatoes to make my soup, so I just used canned tomatoes I had on hand.
I also made little crostini for garnishes. So. Good.
-about 1/2 T. olive oil
-1 small yellow onion
-1 heaping teaspoon minced garlic
-2 C. chicken stock
-2 14.5 oz. cans diced tomatoes (undrained)
-1 T. sugar
-the leaves of 3 small-medium sprigs of fresh basil
(approx. 1 1/2 T. fresh basil)
-dash of cayenne pepper
-salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the chicken stock, canned tomatoes and sugar. Heat to a simmer. Add fresh basil, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Lower the heat to low and allow to simmer 15-20 minutes. After 15-20 minutes, check the flavor of your soup. Make adjustments as needed. If you add any more spices, allow to simmer an additional 5-10 minutes to infuse the flavors. If you make no changes, turn off the heat and allow to cool just briefly. When the soup has cooled a bit, blend with an immersion blender. If you don't have an immersion blender, allow to cool even more and then blend in batches in a regular blender. Serve warm.
-slices of bread (such as Italian bread or a baguette. I used a whole wheat baguette I made)
Heat up a small or medium pan. Place slices of bread on a cookie sheet and drizzle both sides with olive oil. Place slices of bread in the pan, do this in batches if you are wanting to make more crostini than will fit in your pan. Cook for 3-5 minutes on the first side, until the crostini are golden brown and crispy. Flip them over and cook the other side. Sprinkle with a little garlic salt and top with a pinch of mozzarella cheese. Cover your pan with a lid, if you have one, and continue to cook another 3-5 minutes, until the second side is browned and crispy and the cheese is melted.
I hope you guys enjoy these recipes, let me know how you like them!