Anytime I drive between San Francisco and Sacramento, I always make a point of stopping at Pedrick Farms in Dixon. It’s like a farmers’ market in a building. They always have amazing produce and the prices are incredible.
On our way back into The City we stopped off and found huge bags filled with luscious red peppers. I’m a huge fan, but it’s not uncommon to pay an arm and a leg for them in San Francisco (particularly at Sharon Stone’s). So there was no way I could resist an entire bag full for $2.99.
I’ll always remember this amazing roasted red pepper soup our friend Dee made, shortly after she moved here from Denver. It’s just always stuck with me. So when I got home and started contemplating what I was going to do with the peppers, it didn’t take long to arrive at soup. I found a delicious recipe over at A Spicy Perspective and away we went. You definitely want to make this one!
Roasted Red Pepper Soup
- 3 lbs. red bell peppers, halved and cleaned (8-10)
- 5 cloves garlic, in peel
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 2 Tb. olive oil
- 2 large sprigs fresh thyme (1 Tb. leaves)
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 cups chicken stock (or vegetable broth)
- 1 tsp. hot sauce
- ½ tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. ground pepper
- 1-2 Tb. rice vinegar
- Half the peppers and remove all seeds and membranes. Press them flat with your hand and lay them on a foil lined, rimmed baking sheet. Place the garlic cloves on the baking sheet.
- Set the oven on broil and raise the rack to the upper position. Broil the red peppers and garlic for 15 minutes.
- Once the skin has blackened, remove from the oven and place in a large zip bag to steam. (10 minutes)
- Preheat a large pot to medium heat. Add the oil, thyme, bay leaves, and onions. Cook for 10 minutes, until onions are soft.
- Add the broth, hot sauce, salt and pepper. Squeeze the garlic cloves out of the peels into the pot.
- Then peel the charred skin off each pepper half and place it in the pot.
- Reduce the heat, cover and cook another 20 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Then, using a hand-held immersion blender or standard blender, blend until smooth. *If using a blender, BE SURE TO remove the plug on the lid and cover with a kitchen towel—this with allow the heat to vent without a big mess!
- Add the vinegar and salt again if needed.
- Serve with extra thyme leaves. (In the photos I thinned out a little plain Greek yogurt with milk to make a fancy swirl on top. Pretty, but not necessary.)