Today I tried to use as much of my recently acquired equipment in a go,and tried out the smoked tomato soup recipe from Williams Sonoma (the GF wants to try it, so I made a dry run). Got to break in my demeyere Stovetop Smoker, a Staub crockpot, a stick blender (Braun), and a chinois (the last one I bought myself, $12 at Surfas).
Came out really well, so I figured I'd share the recipe, with the modifications made.
First, I smoked 1/2 a pound (about 3) Roma tomatoes, sliced lengthwise, tossed in olive oil/salt/pepper, for about 15 min.
At the same time, I tossed six inches worth of cubed bread (La Brea Bakery country white, for those of you in L.A.), and baked at 350 for 15 min. Since I was making a 1/2 recipe, but forgot to halve the bread, I now have a nice bag of croutons).
In the crockpot, I sweated half an onion in olive oil 5 min, 2 min with 1/4 t paprika, then turned up the heat with 3T each of orange juice and port (it called for Sherry, but it was what was around), cooked down for 10 min.
I added the smoked tomatoes, a 14 oz can of diced San Marzanos (WF is carrying the small ones now), 2 cups of chicken stock (from savory choice concentrate, and a little cayenne, and simmered for 15 minutes.
Then the fun part. Puree with the stick blender, chinois into a new pot, and cook on low with the croutons for 5 min. One more shot with the stick blender, and into the bowl, with a little sour cream and parsley garnish.
A lot richer and deeper than most tomato soups I've had, and done in under 90 min.
Served with a little of the bread topped and toasted with some melted Dubliner cheese (WF is pushing it, so why not).
Probably an excessive amount of equipment to go through for a bowl of soup, but tons of fun (although I haven't cleaned yet).
Just wanted to share, and throw out a recipe for those last few weeks of winter.