Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Roasted Vegetable Minestrone

I am about to head off to England for a few days and wanted to use up some of the vegetables I have lying around before I go. Since I also had some good chicken stock (made in the slow cooker from bones leftover from Slow Cooker Basque Chicken), soup was a logical idea.

The result is one of those wonderful serendipitous soups that deserves a repeat! Sweet from the onions, roasted tomatoes, and sweet potato, nicely warmed by the green chile, with underlying depth from the stock, with a hint of smokiness from the roasted peppers. 

Roasted Vegetable Minestrone
These are the vegetables I had on hand, but if you have 2 bell peppers of different colours, use those. The stock and roasted tomatoes produced a broth that was so good that I didn't add any herbs, but I might do if I was using a lighter stock.

500 grams tomatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 green pepper (or other bell pepper)
2 yellow onions, sliced
3 fat cloves of garlic, minced
1 green serrano chili, seeded and finely sliced
1 sweet potato, diced in 1.5 cm cubes
4 cups homemade chicken stock (for example, from a roasted chicken)

  1. Preheat the oven to 220C/450F.
  2. Slice the tomatoes about 1 cm thick and lay the slices out on a baking sheet. Dribble half the olive oil over them, and season with salt and freshly-ground pepper. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile char the green pepper over an open flame. (Alternatively, you could put the tomatoes and pepper under the broiler until the pepper is charred and the tomatoes caramelized. I haven't tried this though. ) Cover and let cool, then remove the skin. It's OK if a few charred bits remain. Chop into about 1.5 cm pieces.
  4. In a large heavy pot, heat the remaining olive oil, then sauté the onions, garlic, and chili for 2-3 minutes.  Added the roasted tomatoes and their juice, the chopped green pepper, and the sweet pepper. 
  5. Add the chicken stock, bring to a boil, then simmer for 20-30 minutes. Adjust the seasonings, and serve with some crusty bread.

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