Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - Roasted (canned) tomatoes and a secret ingredient makes for fabulous, rich flavor. You'll find yourself craving it again and again!
This never, EVER happens here in North Carolina! They’re predicting snow for the NEXT THREE DAYS!! Many winters, we get either no snow or, at most, just a flurry here and there. The meteorologists get all excited at even the possibility of winter weather and, consequently, get all of us “lay” people totally psyched up.

Everywhere you go there’s an excited buzz (“Did you hear they’re predicting …….)” and we run to the market, stocking up on the basics, leaving the shelves looking like the locusts have just passed over. Schools get canceled or delayed before the first flake hits the ground and sleds are pulled out in anticipation of winter fun. Even though I grew up in Wisconsin where snow’s an everyday event, I’ve grown quite “Southern” over the years and tend to get just as excited now days as the locals do.

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - Roasted (canned) tomatoes and a secret ingredient makes for fabulous, rich flavor. You'll find yourself craving it again and again!
All this to say, it’s most definitely the perfect time of the year for soup! I long for soup season all summer long and love to take advantage of these chilly, winter-weather-threatening days to indulge in the luxury and cozy warmth of soup. I make a zillion varieties of soup, from a classically French Beef Bourguignon Soup to a south of the border Chicken Tortilla Soup and everything in between. With the potential for snowy weather, a Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque sounded wonderful to me this time.

I love the depth of flavor that roasting imparts to veggies, so I decided to employ this method for my bisque. All the veggies, including the canned tomatoes, were roasted until tender and caramelized.

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - Roasted (canned) tomatoes and a secret ingredient makes for fabulous, rich flavor. You'll find yourself craving it again and again!

The flavorful veggies were simmered with chicken broth, herbs, a secret ingredient* and a dollop of pesto (that’s where the “basil” comes in in this winter soup), then pureed till smooth and silky. To add creaminess, yet keep it healthy, I used non-fat Greek yogurt instead of cream or milk.

And what makes it a bisque?  I’m so glad you asked ……….. traditionally, bisque was a thick, rich soup made with seafood or shellfish and cream. Now days creamy soups with pureed vegetables are often referred to as bisques. Honestly, I was just in a more bisque-y than soup-y mood and just liked the way Roasted Tomato-Basil Bisque rolled off my tongue. Hope you weren’t looking for a super technical explanation!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor.

No matter what you decide to call it; a soup or a bisque, I think you’ll love this healthy, richly flavored soup. If you need any further convincing, check out the wordless endorsement from a satisfied customer below.

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Sure hope you’re fixing something good for me Grammy!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

I’m a little worried, it looks a bit like that pureed stuff you guys used to feed me.
I’m NOT a baby anymore!!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Well, it looks a bit more interesting than the pureed stuff, but I’m still not sure….

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Okay, you usually make something good so I’ll give it a try ……….
opening up the barn door ………. WIDE!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Oh, I think I like it, but I probably need a bit more to be sure ……….

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Taste-testers have to be certain when they make a call ……….. after all, we don’t want your readers to get any second-class recipes!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

The only way to be sure is to do it myself ………. Grammy! I can do it myself!!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

I love this stuff!! More please!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

I’m thinking about that mystery ingredient, what in the world could it be?
I’m looking but I don’t see anything strange…….

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

What in the world could it be?

Grammy, you’re always playing these tricks on me ………..

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

thinking, thinking, thinking …………

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Hmmm, still thinking, using all those culinary skills you’ve been teaching me ……….

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

I got it Grammy, I got it!! But I won’t spill the beans, I’ll let your readers find out for themselves!!

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor. This kid's crazy about it!

Oh man, it’s gone? It was deeeeeeeeeeelicious! Maybe you shouldn’t tell the readers what the mystery ingredient is, you know, what they don’t know won’t hurt them. Of course if you don’t tell them, they won’t be able to make this wonderful Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque for themselves and they’ll definitely LOVE this one!

By the way, I grew up with 5 siblings. I learned to cook watching and helping my mom cook for her “herd”. Now days, with our kids grown and just Scott and I at home, I still don’t know how to cook “small”. This soup generously feeds 8 people. You can cut the recipe in half, but honestly, you may be sorry. It keeps well for 4-5 days in the fridge and is one of those soups where the flavor keeps getting better! It would be great for school or work lunches. We love it with a toasted sandwich.

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Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque

Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque - delicious any time. The basil gives this soup an amazingly fresh flavor.

Roasted (canned) tomatoes and a secret ingredient makes for fabulous, rich flavor. You’ll find yourself craving it again and again!

  • Author:
  • Category: Soup

Ingredients

  • 3 28-ounce cans peeled tomatoes (if you can find San Marzano tomatoes, they are wonderful but if not, the soup will still be great)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 medium shallots
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 head garlic
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons pesto
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 2 anchovy fillets*
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup milk
  • pesto

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400˚F. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper or foil. Drain tomatoes well, reserving juice. Set juice aside.
  2. Cut tomatoes in half and place on one of the prepared pans with cut side up. Drizzle tomatoes with 2 tablespoon olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  3. Cut celery into 2-3-inch pieces. Cut onions in half then each half into 4 wedges. Cut each shallot in half. Place all veggies on second pan and drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and a generous grind of black pepper. Stir to coat veggies with oil. (I like to do this with my hands.)
  4. Cut 1/4 inch off top of garlic. Place, cut side down, in a small, oven-safe bowl. Drizzle with 2 teaspoons of olive oil and cover with foil. Place bowl on sheet pan with onion mixture.
  5. Place both pans in the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Remove from oven. Turn tomatoes so that cut side now faces down. Stir onion mixture and return both pans to oven.
  6. Roast onion mixture another 15 minutes, then remove from oven. Tomatoes should be roasted another 30 minutes for a total of 1 hour.
  7. Cool slightly, then squeeze garlic bulbs to release individual cloves.Transfer garlic and contents of both pans to a large Dutch oven. Add reserved tomato juice, chicken broth and pesto, stir well. Add oregano, basil, anchovies and brown sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, then puree with an immersion blender to a regular blender.**
  8. To serve, combine Greek yogurt and milk, stir until smooth. Ladle soup into bowls and drizzle with a bit of Greek yogurt mixture and pesto. Serve hot.

Notes

*Don’t skip the anchovies! There’s no fish taste in the soup but anchovies add delicious flavor. I usually keep a tube of anchovy paste in my refridge. It keeps for a long time and I can’t tell any difference from the canned little fishies (plus I don’t have to look at them 🙂 Substitute1/2 inch of paste for 1 anchovy.
If you prefer the canned anchovies and don’t use the entire tin, they can be frozen until you need them again.
** If using a regular blender, make sure to let the mixture cool a bit before blending. Also, when you blend the mixture, start slow and blend in small batches. Leave the center cap off and cover the opening with a clean kitchen towel. This will prevent the hot liquid from making a mess all over your kitchen.



37 thoughts on “Roasted Tomato Basil Bisque”

  • Such little sweetie. Chris, you are so clever. I would have never dreamed of roasting the canned tomatoes. Will definitely have to try this. If you care to, enjoy your snow. I have enough memories of living in the M idwest in winter to last a lifetime.

  • I just made your soup yesterday and I have to say it is one of the best tomato soups I have ever made. And I used your secret ingredient even though my husband said I didn’t need to add it. Besides roasting the tomatoes , it was probably one of the most important ingredients. Thanks for always publishing such great recipes.

  • I know I read this post before as I remember the cutie pie enjoying her soup! I had to shudder at the memories of last winter, we had 3 snow events in Alabama and it wasn’t fun! I dread, dread, dread, this winter, but I am going to make sure I have ingredients on hand for your delicious soups Chris!

  • These pictures put a big smile on my face, how sweet and adorable!

    And now I want this delicious soup too!

  • The winter weather was crazy, but the mid-70’s this week was even crazier LOL! I love that you made soup on the chilly days, I believe your sweet little one loved that fabulous soup too!! It looks amazing! Hugs, Terra

  • Hi, I would just skip the anchovies. They do add a depth of flavor but with all the other wonderful ingredients, I think this soup will be great even without the little fishies. You may need a bit of extra salt as they do add some saltiness. Enjoy!!

  • What a cute messy face! I am constantly looking for a good homemade tomato soup recipe. Do you know how many are out there that claim to be homemade that actually use canned soup as a base???? Love that you used yogurt in this.

  • Beautiful soup! I always roast my tomatoes when making tomato soup but I’ve never thought to roast the celery and other ingredients too – brilliant! Your little grand daughter is adorable and I love that she LOVED this soup.

  • Tomato soup/bisque is our favorite but I have never made it from scratch. That is about to change. 🙂 This looks delicious…creamy and full of flavor! It never occurred to me to roast canned tomatoes. Thank you for sharing that idea and the tip about San Marzano tomatoes. I will look for them.
    Your taste-tester is adorable!

  • Chris, this soup is gorgeous (and so is your taste tester!). I eat soup all year round, tomato, being one of my favorites. I really love the way you jazzed this up! The yogurt and pesto as a garnish is brilliant, and I’m looking forward to trying that in many soups in the future. Stay warm and dry. And oh…I think I could use one of those bibs for myself! ; – }

  • Too cute! Someone’s got adventurous taste buds, it looks like! What a sweet little pumpkin, and a gorgeous tomato-basil bisque, Chris. I need to get one of those bibs for my Junebug-to-be!

  • Tomato soup or bisque is the king of soups to me, and I bet your recipe is heaven! I’m guessing that anchovies are the secret ingredient, and I do appreciate the the visual of you squinting to pull them out of the tin with half closed eyes, so I will put my total faith in you and try this 🙂
    Your taste tester is adorable, and already has quite the sophisticated palette! Hope Mother Nature was kind enough to leave your power on~yesterday was our 3rd snow storm in 3 weeks in Birmingham Alabama, and we don’t want anymore! Thanks for the recipe
    Jenna

  • Such a delicious and perfect roasted tomato bisque you made, and a ‘satisfied customer’…no doubt!
    Love all the step-by-step photos of your adorable granddaughter; the flower bow is so cute in her hair…what a ‘personality’….so precious…just warms my heart! xo

  • I moved to Knoxville to go to UT from Maine and the first dusting of snow schools were closed, the university shut down, people left work early and I couldn’t believe it. In Maine, it would have been a normal day but an inch of snow in Knoxville shut the city down. One year when my kids were in elementary school they didn’t go to school for the entire months of January. I don’t recall more than a handful of snow days in Maine schools.

    I love those photos of your baby and I would eat the whole bowl of soup too.

  • what a wonderful idea roasting canned tomatoes…..i will certainly experiment
    with this idea. Yes, on the anchovies…we love them, but, they do not adulterate
    the flavor of anything to taste like fish. You are correct, it adds that extra missing
    link to any food. Yet, no one can tell what you did…….brilliant! Sel

  • I don’t think I could argue with your cute lil taste tester, she has a very discerning look about her 😉
    This comforting soup is just what we need right now, thank you Chris! And I do like the addition of anchovies. On the lookout for San Marzano toms!

  • Such cute pictures and captions under them Love it!! Very fitting I might add.

    My son has lived in Charlotte going on 3 years. I think this is his first bad winter weather. We are in North Georgia and our hill in iced over. Will not be going anywhere until at least Friday. That is fine just PRAY we keep power.

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