I came to an appreciation of tomato soup later in life. I don't really remember ever having it as a kid. Or if I was offered it I probably said no thanks, being the picky eater that I was back then. It wasn't until college that a roommate introduced me to the joys of grilled cheese with tomato soup. Being thrifty college students it was of course Campbell's in a can. But that didn't matter; it was wonderful on a cold day. After college, a friend in culinary school made me tomato soup from scratch and it was divine. Since having her version I've searched high and low for a really good recipe. (She did share her recipe with me, but I confess I've never been able to make it as good as she does.) Well, I have found my soup at last. It turns out the Olive Garden has recipes on their website. I know! And whatever you may think of chain restaurants, this is both really good and really easy. Win win in my book! So, since we're having freezing rain here in my little corner of the world, I thought we could all use a warm meal on a cold night. I served it with a loaf of garlic bread. :)
Cream of Tomato and Basil Soup from Olive Garden
4 Tbsp butter
1 small red onion, diced
2 cups dry white wine
3 cups canned diced tomatoes
2 cups heavy cream
3 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
Melt butter in a heavy sauce pan. Add red onions and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add white wine and reduce by 3/4. Add tomatoes and heavy cream, bring to a simmer and reduce by 1/2.
Puree soup in a food processor. Stir in 2 Tbsp chopped basil, salt and pepper.
Garnish with remaining fresh basil and serve.