10 June 2013

Tomato Basil Soup (番茄九层塔湯)


Although food bloggers love to eat, but we are caution about our diet as much as everyone else. Especially if we have lots of tasting, we grow side way faster than expected. To maintain my figure, I avoid taking rice for dinner and soup is my favourite choice. Sadly, I don't have time to boil the soups for hours after work and watching the fire can be a pain in the ass at time, don't you agree?

Not anymore, after I try making soup with Panasonic Rice Cooker. I can stir-fry the ingredients in it, dump everything in, program to FAST/SLOW Cook, close the lid, have a shower, shake my leg and ta-da, the soup is ready!

After trying one of the best tomato soup recently at a tasting with Hazel, it inspire us to try making our own version. Hazel "self-invited" herself to my house to create this recipe together. We homemade the vegetable stock and used canned tomato puree (as much as we wanted to make everything fresh, but time ain't on our side).

It is not the ultra-pungent stock, but light and mild in flavor. You can simmer in the rice cooker for 30 to 45 minutes to extract the maximum flavor from the vegetables. I had used the FAST Cook instead (time ain't on our side, remember?) and the soup was still flavourful. The vegetable stock is, in my opinion, the most versatile stock because it is flavorful enough (and healthy) to create stews, soups, pasta and other flavouring of food.


Recipe: Tomato Basil Soup (番茄九层塔湯)
Serves: 3-4 pax

Ingredients for Vegetable Stock:
(i use half of this recipe for tomato soup, but you can make extra and keep the rest of the stock in the fridge for other purpose)
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 large yellow onion
• 2 stalks celery, including some leaves
• 2 large carrots
• 1 bunch spring onions, chopped
• 8 cloves garlic, minced
• 8 springs fresh parsley
• 6 sprigs fresh thyme
• 2 bay leaves
• 8 cups of water (2L)

Method for Vegetable Stock:
1. Chop scrubbed vegetable into 1 inch chunks.
IMG_6754 crop

2. Select "QUICK COOK" program (it might auto set to warm after a couples of minutes, as there is no water in the pan. you can set to the "quick cook" program again after a couple of mins, this does not affect the cooking). Heat olive oil in the inner pan, add onion, celery, carrots, scallions, garlic, parsley, thyme and bay leaves. Cook over high heat for 5-10 mins, stirring frequently.

3. Add salt and water, close the lid. Bring to a boil using QUICK COOK for 30mins (or slow cook for 45mins).
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4. Press "Keep Warm/Off" button to turn off the rice cooker, unplug the powder plug. Take out the inner pan, strain and discard vegetables.

You can add in your favourite choice of veggies like asparagus, mushroom, corn cobs, celery, basil etc.

Ingredients for Tomato Soup:
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
• half bulb of garlic, crushed
• 14 fresh basil leaf
• 2 tsp dried basil leaf
• 2 dry bay leaf
• 10 cherry tomatoes, halved
• 1 can of 100% Natural Hunts Tomatoes Puree (822g)
• 1 can 100% Natural Hunts Diced Tomatoes Basil, Garlic & Oregano (411g)
• 2 tsp of sugar
• cayenne pepper (optional)

Method for Tomato Soup:
1. Program the rice cooker to "QUICK COOK". Heat oil in the inner pan, add everything except the cherry tomatoes and canned of tomatoes. Keep stirring for 3 minutes or until onion has softened.

2. Add in the cherry tomatoes, stir-fry for 1 min. (don't worry if the rice cooker turn to "Warm" mode, as there is no water in the pan, it get heat up really fast, you can turn to "Quick Cook" after a while.

3. Add in the puree, dice tomatoes and 300ml of vegetable stock. Ensure that the rice cooker program is on "Quick Cook", close the lid. Cook for about 20mins, stirring occasionally. Season with sugar and cayenne powder to taste.
IMG_6795 IMG_6805

4. Press "Keep Warm/Off" button to turn off the rice cooker, unplug the powder plug. Discard the bayleaf and set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly. Puree the soup in Panasonic blender, filled the food mill unit 3/4 full, lock the cover onto the food mill. Blend with speed 1 for about 45sec or until smooth.
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5. Garnished with fresh cream or yogurt and serve immediately.
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Although the soup did not turn out what we were expecting (the spice did not turn out as heavy as we wanted). However in my opinion, it is still tasty. Very rich, with the right consistency and a spicy note to give a extra kick.

Served with tomato bruschetta if you like.

Panasonic has a very sophisticated kitchen appliance with some great features like settings for soup, porridge, brown rice, cake/bread and quick cook (70% faster than normal cooking), all in a diamond fluorine & binchotan charcoal coated full surface dimpled inner pan.
Panasonic Rice Cooker

In this recipe, we also use Panasonic Blender
Panasonic Blender

More information on the above Panasonic kitchen appliances @ www.panasonic.com.sg.
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The “Vote & Win” contest for Singapore Blog Awards 2013 Panasonic Best Cooking Blog is still ongoing till 23 June 2013. Don't forget to support your favourite blogger (or US!) at https://apps.facebook.com/panasonic_sg_vote/?vtype=gallery&fType=Best+Cooking+Blogs and stand a chance to win a prize!

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