March 31st already!

It’s been a great month of cooking and baking. I’m so very happy with my choice for Flavour of the Month:  Paulette Mitchell’s A Beautiful Bowl of Soup. With Mitchell’s fantastic recipe, I learned how to make something new. Something I’d never tried before:  an incredible vegetable stock. Hands down, that is the best thing that I can ask for from a cookbook. My copy is splattered, dog-eared, covered in post-it notes … and I love it!

So here we are my friends! The eve of a new weekend and the the eve of a new month.

You are all such an incredible source of inspiration for me. Not a day goes by where I don’t learn about a new food, a new recipe, a new cookbook, a new way of cooking. Show me … tell me … teach me … I can’t wait to see what you have in store for me in April!

I wish all of you a month of happy blogging ahead! I’m sending you a bowl of comforting Cream of Tomato Soup to get you started.



Cream of Tomato Soup with Puff Pastry Crowns

Adapted from A Beautiful Bowl of Soup by Paulette Mitchell.

For the soup:

  • a sprig of thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 1-1/2 cans whole tomatoes (28 fluid ounces each, juice reserved)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups half-and-half or milk
  • 1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste (use white pepper if you have it)
  1. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large stockpot. Add the onion and cook until the onions have softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Combine the tomato paste and the water and mix well; add to the butter and onion.
  3. Add the thyme, bay leaf and red pepper flakes; cook for 2 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Add the tomatoes and half of the reserved tomato juice. With a spoon, break up the tomatoes slightly. Add the garlic.
  5. Bring the soup to a boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  6. After 30 minutes, puree the soup in a blender or food processor.
  7. Return the soup to the stockpot and add the remaining butter, the half-and-half or milk and the brown sugar. Taste the soup and add salt and pepper to taste (I used 1 teaspoon of salt and a 1/4 teaspoon of white pepper.) Mix well.
  8. You can either serve the soup as is or you can prepare the puff pastry crowns.
  9. Enjoy!

For the puff pastry crowns:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • puff pastry, thawed
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. Whisk together the egg and the water to make an egg wash.
  3. Roll out your puff pastry until it’s about a 1/4-inch thick.
  4. With a sharp knife, cut out circles that are slightly smaller than the size of the bowls you are using.
  5. Transfer the circles to the baking sheet and brush with the egg wash.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes or until puffed and golden.
  7. Let the the puff pastry crowns cool for a few minutes before placing them on each bowl of soup.

Note:  Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 3 days.

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