This soup is both sweet and savory and has an interesting texture.
- red bell peppers - 4 or 5
- garlic - 3-4 cloves (or more), sliced and sauteed in 11/2 tbsp olive oil
- basil - 9-10 fresh leaves (or dried basil to taste)
- honey - 1 tbsp
- tomato sauce - 15 oz (425 grams)
- tomato puree - 3 1/2 oz (100 grams)
- salt and pepper - to taste
- light brown sugar - sprinkle, to taste
1. Blacken the red peppers under your broiler, on a tray lined with parchment paper, until the skins are charred and shriveled.
2. Remove the peppers from the oven or leave them in the oven with the door closed and oven off for a few minutes. This will loosen the skin and make it easier to remove. Remove the charred part of the skin with a knife.
3. Puree the peppers and garlic in a food processor until thick. Add the basil leaves and process until pureed.
4. Transfer this mixture to a medium-sized pot. Add the honey, tomato sauce, tomato puree, and water. Heat this through, over a low flame. Add the salt, pepper, and light brown sugar. Adjust the amount of water (add more for a thinner soup), honey, and other ingredients to taste.
5. Garnish with chow mein noodles, croutons, or a spoonful of thick plain yogurt.
NOTE: Add a little dry white wine to the soup in place of some of the water for added zip.
TIP: Roast and peel double the amount of peppers that you need, because they freeze well. This way you avoid the mess for next time. Also, you can roast red pep- pers with olive oil, garlic, parsley, and a touch of vinegar. Then peel, chop, and add to fresh salads for a welcome change. Another idea is to use roasted red peppers as a topping for pizza, especially pizza made with tofu instead of cheese.