soups & stews,  vegetarian

Velvety Roasted Red Pepper & Garlic Soup

Soup’s on! You know why?

1. The weather is crisp,

2. I found beautiful red peppers on sale and went crazy, and

3. January is National Soup Month!

This velvety rich soup is one you will want to cozy up to during these winter months. It is vibrant + piquant + creamy. That combination = DELICIOUS!

Roasting the peppers intensifies their flavor and adds a welcomed touch of smoke. Slip them into the oven for a couple of minutes, wait for their skins to blister, then sweat them and peel. So simple yet yields impressive results.

Red bell peppers headline this recipe because of the unique sweetness they develop as they mature. These vermilion beauties are actually green bells peppers that have been allowed to ripen. Leaving them on the vine, commercially speaking, thereby makes them more expensive.

I learned that horticultural nugget from my dad.

Dad had a beautiful backyard garden when my brother and I were kids. He grew almost anything you could imagine could withstand relentless Augusta summers. One of my jobs as dutiful daughter was to pick vegetables as they ripened. I remember carrying  my bounty into the house one day, somewhat forlorn because a green bell pepper had turned red on my watch. I hid it under the tomatoes, hoping no one would notice. (It seemed logical to this nine year old.) Dad, perusing the inventory with pride and curiosity, held the pepper in his hand.

“What’s this?”

“The pepper got old and red on the vine. I’m sorry.”

“No, this pretty girl is the bell of the ball. What a beauty!”

“But isn’t it ruined?”

“On the contrary! This one will be sweet as sugar.”

“Then why don’t we let them all turn red?”

“Well, who can wait that long?”

A teachable moment, for sure.

Either as a first course or a companion to a grilled sandwich, this bowl of buttery creaminess will make you swoon! You can even dress it up for your fancy friends with a smoked gouda crouton. Or garnish it with chives, a swirl of cream or yogurt, or a billow of nutty olive oil… whatever blows your skirt up. You will not be disappointed.

I hope this soup makes you feel warm and cozy this winter.

Enjoy!

XXOO AB

If you make this recipe, I’d love to hear from you!  Post your photos on Instagram and tag #nakedepicurean.

Velvety Roasted Red Pepper & Garlic Soup for 6-8

INGREDIENTS

           S&P

white pepper

  garnish

smoky gouda crouton

fresh chives

INSTRUCTIONS

1.  Roast peppers and garlic in the oven.  

2. In a heavy saucepan, saute leeks and onion in 1 tablespoon of butter until transparent, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with S&P.

3. Chop the roasted peppers. Add peppers, garlic, leeks, and onion to a blender. Let cool a bit, then puree until smooth (or use an emulsion blender).

4. Pour pepper puree into the heavy saucepan.  Add broth, cream, and spices. Simmer until reduced by a third, about 20-25 minutes.

5. Remove from heat. Stir in remaining butter. Add salt and white pepper to taste.

6. Top with a gouda crouton, sprinkle chives on top, and serve.

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