Saturday, January 30, 2010

Tomato Basil Coconut Soup

I am trying to replicate a delicious bowl of soup I had in Portland, at a French bakery/patisserie called St Honore.  Holy smoke, it was exactly what I was looking for, after eating 'travel' food for the previous couple days - it was one of those dishes that just goes beyond expectations.  I saw tomato basil soup on the board, and didn't even notice the coconut...  So, when it was served, and I tasted it, wow!  It was so rich and healthy tasting, the coconut seems to neutralize some of the tomato acid, and makes such an awesome flavor.  It's a big robust flavor, for a tomato soup.  Mmmm.

So, here's what I am trying.  I haven't tasted it yet, but it smells good!

1 red onion, chopped
1/4 c olive oil (or less.  I didn't use this much)
1 can 28 oz Organic Tomatoes (Trader Joes)
2 tsp oregano (dried - didn't have fresh)
20 sprigs of fresh thyme (stripped from stems)
2 bay leaves
bunch basil leaves (roll up and slice thin)
1 14 oz can coconut light milk (Trader Joes)
16 oz vegetable broth (1/2 box - Trader Joes - DO NOT USE the Hearty version)
1/4 c shredded medium coconut
salt and pepper to taste

Saute onion in olive oil.  Add tomatoes, bay leaves, oregano.  Simmer for 20 minutes.
Add coconut milk, basil and coconut.  Simmer for 5 minutes.  Blend in blender, 2 -3 cups at a time.
Garnish with slivers of basil leaves and coconut.

Try toasting the coconut.  Try Thai basil.  Pinch of kitten hair.  Preferably Bingly.

Kirsty made this incredibly delicious salad to go with.  It's greens, goat cheese, toasted walnuts, and red beets.  She makes the dressing too, so I will have to check in on what goes into it.  The whole meal was so perfect for dinner.  Yes, the soup was awesome.  I added the coconut little by little with the intent to mellow the tomatoes.  I don't think I got to a full 1/4 c, and it seemed to release more of its sugars as it simmered.  In the end, it was so good, and I would even go so far as to say- it was as good as St. Honore!

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