Roasted Tomato Soup with Pistachio Pesto

Serves 4.

Note: A deeply flavored, well balanced tomato soup can be the perfect backdrop for interesting garnishes, like this slightly sweet, earthy pistachio-basil pesto. From Meredith Deeds.

• 2 (10 oz.) pkg. cherry tomatoes

• 1 tbsp. olive oil

• 3/4 tsp. salt, divided

• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, divided

• 2 tbsp. unsalted butter

• 1 medium onion, chopped

• 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

• 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

• 1 (28 oz.) can peeled whole tomatoes, in their juices

• 3 c. homemade or low-sodium chicken broth

• 1/4 c. heavy cream

• Garnishes, if desired

• Pistachio Pesto (see recipe)

• Crumbled goat cheese

• Chopped roasted, unsalted pistachios


Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss together the tomatoes, olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Spread the tomatoes in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are browned in spots and exuding liquid.

Meanwhile, heat the butter in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, for 5 to 6 minutes, until the onions soften. Add the garlic, thyme, remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and continue to cook, stirring, for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until fragrant.

Add the canned tomatoes, breaking them up with a spoon. Add the chicken broth and the oven-roasted tomatoes, including the liquid on the baking sheet. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

Remove from heat and blend with an immersion blender, food processor or blender until smooth and return to the pot. (To prevent the hot soup from splattering when using a blender, fill only halfway, loosen the plastic insert in the top and cover with a dish towel.) Add the cream and season with more salt and pepper, if necessary.

Ladle the soup into warm serving bowls and garnish with the pesto, crumbled cheese and chopped pistachios, if desired.

Pistachio Basil Pesto

Makes about 3/4 cup.

Note: Extra pesto would be delicious on pasta, tossed with roasted vegetables, added to vinaigrettes or spooned onto fish or chicken. From Meredith Deeds.

• 1 c. packed fresh basil leaves

• 1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil

• 1/2 c. dry-roasted, unsalted pistachios

• 1/4 c. finely grated Parmesan

• 2 cloves garlic

• 1/4 tsp. salt

• 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper


Process basil, oil, pistachios, Parmesan, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor until it's finely chopped, but hasn't turned into a paste.