UPDATED: Tomatoes are rich in a powerful antioxidant called lycopene (a carotenoid). Lycopene is the natural pretty pigment that makes fruits and vegetables their bright red or pink color. Antioxidants are substances that protect against cell and tissue damage, and carotenoids have long been known to decrease cancer and heart-disease risk.
Studies have shown that lycopene concentrations increase significantly when cooked and even more so when cooked in olive oil. What’s in this soup and how it’s prepared is what makes it so healthy and anti-aging. NOTE: How you prepare and consume your food determines the bioavailability of dietary carotenoids.
If you’re short on time and/or don’t have fresh tomatoes, opt for bionaturae® strained tomatoes instead. bionaturae’s pure organic tomatoes are vine-ripened, hand-harvested, and bottled within 24 hours without added salt, sugar, and citric acid. So you can make a great-tasting summer tomato soup any season! Also, if you don’t have fresh basil or thyme on hand, use dried herbs. To make this soup quickly, scroll down to the clock symbol and follow the How It’s Made Fast directions.
What’s In It…
24 oz. fresh organic tomatoes, cut in 3/4″ slices (about 6 medium) OR one 24-oz glass bottle of bionaturae® organic strained tomatoes (available at Whole Foods Market)
- 2 Enoya peppers or red bell peppers, quartered
- 1 yellow onion, quartered
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 jalapeño pepper
- 2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- cups fresh corn kernels cut from the cob OR 5-oz frozen organic sweet corn (white or yellow)
- 2 cups of dark leafy greens, such as spinach, arugula, Swiss chard or a combination of all
- 8-oz. House Foods® firm tofu, cubed
- 1-1/2+ cup Pacific Foods vegetable broth
- 1/8 cup fresh basil, chopped OR 2 teaspoons dried basil to taste (more herbs equals more antioxidants)
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme OR 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme (add more to your liking)
- 1/8-1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste
How It’s Made…
- Preheat oven to 300°F and place the rack in the center of the oven.
- Place tomatoes, quartered yellow onions and bell peppers, whole garlic, and whole jalapeño pepper in a bowl and toss with olive oil. Toss together.
- Spread evenly on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. (I line the sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.)
- Roast until tomatoes are wilted and browned in places, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Turn the vegetables a few times during roasting.
Blending and Finishing
5. Slice 1/4 of the jalapeño pepper and place in blender. Add the rest of the roasted veggies, some vegetable broth, and blend until smooth.
6. Pour blended veggies into a medium saucepan.
7. If using dried basil and thyme, add them now to allow time to reconstitute.
8. Add the leafy greens, tofu cubes, corn, and vegetable broth (adjust to your preferred consistency) to the soup and cook until the corn is soft and no longer tastes ‘raw’ (about 5 minutes).
9. Season to taste with red pepper flakes, black pepper, and salt (optional).
10. If using fresh basil and thyme, add them now. Mix well.
11. Remove from heat and serve immediately.
How It’s Made Fast…
- Mince garlic and jalapeño pepper. Chop onions and bell peppers.
- Sauté onions in 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat until soft.
- Add garlic and peppers, then sauté for a minute. Stir constantly so garlic does not burn. Cook until veggies are soft and tender.
- Add cooked veggies to a blender (and some vegetable broth) and purée if desired. Otherwise, skip the blending and leave them chunky.
- Pour in bionaturae® strained tomatoes, and stir occasionally for a few minutes.
- Add dried basil and thyme, add them now to allow time to reconstitute.
- Cover and continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
- Add the leafy greens, tofu cubes, corn, vegetable broth (adjust to your preferred consistency) to the soup, and cook until the corn is soft and no longer tastes ‘raw’ (about 5 minutes).
- Season to taste with red pepper flakes, black pepper, and dash of salt (optional).
- Remove from heat and serve immediately.