quick cream of tomato soup with basil

Quick Cream of Tomato Soup with Basil

quick cream of tomato soup with basil

What can be more comforting than a bowl of soup? If you need a quick fix, or are in a hurry to get dinner on the table, this one is for you.

INGREDIENTS

• 1 tbsp. Olive oil
• 1 small onion, peeled and chopped fine
• 1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
• 2 medium carrots, washed and sliced
• 2 tbsp. tomato paste
• 2 cans peeled plum tomatoes
• 2 tubs passata
• 2 stock cubes, beef
• 2 tot 3 whole sprigs of basil with the leafs, left whole
• 1 – 2 tsp. sugar
• 1 Cup evaporated milk
• ¼ Cup Cream Cheese
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• A handful of fresh Basil leafs, for serving
• 1 Cup grated cheddar (loosely packed) for serving
• 1 tray ready made small meatballs

quick cream of tomato soup with basil

INSTRUCTIONS:

Heat the olive oil in a large pot.
Add onions, carrots and garlic and sautée until translucent. About 5 minutes on medium low heat.
Add the tomato paste and fry for 30 seconds.
Add the canned tomatoes and passata and the stock cubes (crumbled between your fingers)
Also add one can (from the tomatoes) filled with hot water.
Add the whole sprigs of basil, bring to a slow simmer and leave for 15 – 20 minutes.
Remove the basil sprigs and blend with an immersion blender.
Add the meatballs.
Add milk and cream cheese. Add the sugar one teaspoon at a time and check how you like it, adding the remaining teaspoon if necessary. I like it sweet so I added two, and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
At this point check the thickness of the soup, if you want it thinner add some more milk or water and if you do, adjust seasoning again.
Sprinkle with some Basil leafs and serve piping hot and serve with some crunchy baguette.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

Mexican Pulled Beef with Jalapeño Cheddar Corn Bread

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I feel like putting on a big sweater and pulling the sleeves over my hands while I eat a bowl of Chili…..

I had been walking around with this image in my head for a while and since the temperatures are dropping here in NL, I’ve made that vision finally come true. I wanted something different from the classic “chili con carne”, so I made pulled beef instead, with a mexican twist.

And since “twist” is my middle name, I’ve made a different kind of Cornbread to go with it. One with softness and texture at the same time, some cheese for extra flavour and a tiny Jalapeño kick, and I say tiny because I have only used half a Jalapeño. I still wanted to be able to eat the chili at a reasonable speed.

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Ingredients Chili;

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

2.5 lbs. boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 2 thick slices

1 tsp. Himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tbsp. All Purpose Unbleached Flour

2 medium onions, peeled and chopped fine

3  garlic cloves, peeled and grated

2 tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa (this is a must)

2 tbsp. ground Cumin

2 tbsp. sweet smoked paprika

¼ cup tomato paste

2 Tablespoon fresh oregano leafs or 2 teaspoon dried

1/2 tsp. dried Thyme

1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper, or to taste

1/4 C. Chopped Coriander

1 (15-ounce) cans dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

2 C. beef stock

1-2 tbsp. Liquid Smoke

1 – 2 tsp. chopped chipotle (depending on how hot you like it)

1 tbsp. coconut sugar or sweetener of choice

1/2 cinnamon stick

2 bay leaves

2 tbsp. fresh Coriander leafs

Toppings; scallions, avocado chunks, sour cream, cheddar cheese, fried onion rings

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Method;

Turn on your slow cooker, set to high.

Meanwhile heat a large frying pan and add 3 tbsp. of oil. Season the beef with the salt and pepper and toss with the flour. Sear the beef on both sides and brown until quite dark. Transfer to the slow cooker

Next fry the onions in the pan with the remaining oil until golden add the garlic and cook for an other minute. Transfer to the slow cooker.

Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker, except the beans and Coriander leafs

Cook on high for 4 hours. After three hours add the beans. The cooking time depends on your slow cooker and the quality of the beef. So just check by pulling away a piece of beef with a fork. If it loosens easily transfer the beef to a cutting board or large platter. Leaving the beans in the pot. Pull the beef apart into chunky bits and shreds with two forks. Return to slow cooker. Heat thoroughly again for about half an hour  until ready to serve. Sprinkle generously with fresh Coriander leafs. Serve with Pumpkin Corn Bread and lots of toppings.

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Ingredients Jalapeño Cheddar Corn Bread;

1 C. corn meal

1 C. Spelt Flour

2 tsp. Baking Powder

1 tsp. dried Onion Powder

1/2 tsp.

1/2 tsp Baking Soda

1 tbsp. honey

1/2 C. corn kernels form a can, drained

1/2 C. Cheddar cheese, grated

3/4 C. unsweetened plain yoghurt (or soy)

1/2 C of milk (or unsweetened soy) + 1 tbsp.

2 large eggs at room temperature

1/2 Jalapeño, sliced and deseeded

3 tbsp. olive oil

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Method;

Pre heat the oven to 425° F / 220° C

Put an 8″ cast iron skillet in the oven too to pre heat

In a bowl mix all the dry ingredients and stir to mix. Add the wet ingredients and stir to combine.

Remove the cast iron skillet from the oven with an oven mitt! Oil spray generously and pour the cornbread batter in the skillet.

Place on a rack in the middle of the oven and bake from 20-25 min.

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Maybe get some Mexican beer to go with it!

Not quite what you’re looking for? How about Cajun Jumbo Shrimp Tacos with Corn, a Peach & Koriander Salsa and Roasted Pepper Aïoli