February 28, 2011

Tomato Fennel Soup with Fennel Orange Gremolata

For those living in the cold corners of the world, this post is for you. Spring has been flirting with us here in NYC, random warm days coyly flitting about here and there between periods of brutal cold. This soup is the perfect antidote, especially when served with a grilled cheese brioche sandwich. It's also easily thrown together and ready within the hour.

Tomato Fennel Soup with Fennel Orange Gremolata
from Food & Wine magazine, March 2011

Tomato Fennel Soup
1/4 cup + 2 T olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 fennel bulb, trimmed and finely chopped
4 sprigs of thyme
3 T tomato paste
salt + pepper
4 cups water
2 - 28 oz cans peeled Italian tomatoes, finely chopped, juices reserved

Heat the oil in a large pot. Add the onion, fennel, and thyme, and cook until softened, stirring occasionally. Stir in the tomato paste and add salt and pepper to taste. Cook for about 5 minutes. Add the water and the tomatoes with their juices, and bring to a boil. Simmer until the liquid is reduced by about a third. This will take about 30 minutes.

Remove the thyme and puree half of the soup in a blender. If you're lazy like me and have a hand held blender, puree the soup partially in the pot.

Serve with the fennel orange gremolata and a warm, gooey grilled cheese sandwich.

Fennel Orange Gremolata
1/4 cup chopped fennel fronds
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 t orange zest
1 T olive oil

Mix all ingredients. Easy peasy.

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