Dinner Table Rating
1 thumb per family member
Accessibility of ingredients, ease of preparation, and affordability
The weather here has recently turned a bit fall-ish. It’s like nature took Labor Day seriously and said “Hey guys! Summer’s over!” So on the first cool, rainy day we had I decided that we simply had to have some soup for dinner. I hadn’t planned any soup because I hadn’t expected cold, rainy weather so soon. But there it was, and I had to have some soup. This one was just. perfect.
This soup gets all three stars for being accessible, easy and affordable. It also gets all six thumbs up! Which means that even I, with all my food allergies, was able to eat it too. Any dish that we can all sit down to eat together is a real winner in our house.
Tomato Dill Soup Nourishing Traditions, page 220
- 2 medium onions peeled and chopped
- 3 celery stalks coarsely chopped
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 8 ripe tomatoes peeled, seeded and chopped
- 2 cups homemade chicken stock (p 124)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried green peppercorns crushed (omitted)
- sea salt or fish sauce and pepper
- 1⁄4 cup fresh dill chopped
- piima cream or creme fraiche (p 84)
1. Peel and coarsely chop the tomatoes.
Don’t feel obligated to peel your tomatoes. I chose to, because I was using tomatoes from my garden that happen to peel very easily (even without scalding). If you’re feeding your mother-in-law, or a picky preschooler then by all means, peel your tomatoes. Otherwise, I say don’t bother.
2. In a large soup pot, saute onions and celery gently in butter until tender. Add tomatoes and stock. Bring to a boil and skim. Add crushed peppercorns. Simmer about 15 minutes.
I had the last of my garden carrots in the fridge so shredded them and threw them in the soup too. No one noticed, and I boosted the veggie content. Win-win! Skimming while the soup is boiling removes any impurities from the stock that rise to the surface. Pre-Nourishing Traditions I was in the habit of just stirring it back in. Now I skim. I will say I notice a huge difference in the amount of skimming needed when using a high-quality organic chicken to make my broth as opposed to a conventional chicken.
3. Puree soup with a handheld blender. Thin soup with water if necessary, and season to taste. Stir in the dill. Simmer gently about 5 minutes. Ladle into heated bowls and serve with cultured cream.
For all my cooking I have, somehow, never added an immersion blender to my kitchen. Not having one is a true deterrent to preparing pureed soups. The alternative (processing it in batches in the blender) is unwieldy and time consuming. I recommend the minor investment of buying an immersion blender if you plan on making lots of soup. I think this may be the year that I break down and buy one.
Be sure to taste your soup and season with salt and pepper. Tomatoes are acidic and it can be hard to get just the right balance. Sometimes I end up adding in a little bit of honey too in order to get the flavor just right. Keep tasting until it suits your preference.
I’m considering cooking up a huge batch of this soup for the freezer. I know those fall days will soon turn into winter days. This soup was so warm and comforting, it would be a nice one to have on hand for a quick lunch or dinner.