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We are in for a winter storm later, so I thought it would be a perfect time to make some delicious soup. I decided to go with Tomato and Fennel Soup. It’s a fantastic way to turn ordinary tomato soup into a more grown-up sophisticated version. It does still go great with a grilled cheese sandwich, however! This soup makes a great healthy meal while still being a comfort on a snowy day.
A little about fennel
Many people are not familiar with fennel. Even though it is a flowering green herb, it is actually a part of the carrot family. It’s indigenous to the shores of the Mediterranean which is why it is a very popular vegetable in Italian dishes.
In Italian, we call fennel “finocchio” and it takes me right back to being a young girl. I am transported back to my grandparent’s kitchen, where raw fennel was served after every big meal. I never questioned why at the time, I just liked the taste – but now I know it improves digestion and prevents gas.
- It is sweet in taste, resembles the flavor of black licorice and anise
- The frons have a stronger taste than the bulbs
- It’s rich in fiber, vitamins C, B9 and B6
- Keep fennel in the fridge, wrapped in plastic wrap for up to one week
How to cut fennel
- Cut off bulb
- Save frons to be used in salads
- Slice off base from bulbs
- Remove outer layer of bulb
- Remove core with pairing knife
Tomato and Fennel Soup
This healthy roasted vegetable soup will really take the chill out of the day. It tastes great (some think even better) the following day, so you may want to double the recipe. It stores well in the refrigerator for 3 – 5 days or it can be frozen for a fast lunch or dinner later on.
Oh, and the house will smell amazing while it cooks!
I usually use one and a half pounds of Roma tomatoes for this soup recipe. You can use beefsteak tomatoes if you prefer – or if you are short on time, use canned whole peeled tomatoes.
Cut your vegetables and place on a shallow rimmed baking pan. For easy clean-up, line the sheet pan with parchment paper (I like to use a reusable Silpat Non-Stick Premium Baking Sheet instead). Toss to combine olive oil and sprinkle vegetables with salt, pepper and fresh thyme leaves. Roast them in a 400°F pre-heated oven for about 25 minutes, until the veggies are lightly charred and tender.
Put the roasted vegetables into a food prosessor or blender and puree. Then add puree mixture to a large pot or dutch oven and add the vegetable stock. Simmer for 20-30 minutes. Add fresh basil and serve.
Let me know if you make this soup in the comments below or snap a picture and tag @coolbeanliving on Instagram. I’d love to see!
Tomato and Fennel SoupPin Recipe
- 8 - 10 Roma tomatoes halved
- 1 large fennel bulb thinly sliced
- 2 red bell peppers deseeded and quartered
- 1 medium onion sliced
- 2 large carrots cut in half, lengthwise
- 4 garlic cloves smashed and peeled
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 5 cups vegetable broth
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
- ½ cup fresh basil leaves thinly sliced
- Preheat oven to 400°F and line large, rimmed baking sheet. Set aside.
- Cut tomatoes, bell peppers, fennel, carrots, and onion.
- Arrange the vegetables and garlic in a single layer on the baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and black pepper. Toss to combine, and sprinkle vegetables with the thyme leaves.
- Place the baking pan in oven and roast until vegetables are tender and lightly charred, approximately 20-25 minutes.
- Puree roasted vegetables in blender or food processor until smooth. Transfer puree to a pot or dutch oven. Cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in fresh basil and serve immediately.