Creamy Tomato Soup with Spider Web Topping
An ideal accompaniment to monte cristo sandwiches, this tomato soup is also delicious without any half-and-half -- or with twice as much. Add 2 cups of cooked white rice to make tomato-rice soup.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 10 cups crushed tomatoes
- 5 cups homemade or low-sodium canned chicken or vegetable stock
- 3 sprigs fresh oregano
- 1/2 to 1 cup half-and-half, plus 2 tablespoons for garnish
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 cup sour cream
Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook, stirring until translucent, about 6 minutes.
Add tomatoes, stock, and oregano; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer gently until thickened, about 45 minutes. Remove oregano sprigs. Puree using an immersion blender, or in batches in a blender.
Slowly add 1/2 cup half-and-half, stirring constantly, until desired consistency is achieved. Season with salt and pepper.
In a small bowl, combine sour cream with remaining 2 tablespoons half-and-half; transfer to a squeeze bottle. Draw a spiral shape on surface of soup; carefully drag a toothpick from the center of the spiral to the perimeter of the soup. Repeat around perimeter to create a spider web. Serve immediately.