This is a delicious soup which can be made into a hearty meal for lunch by the addition of mixed pulses. For an extra ‘kick’ you can create a spicy version by adding a few chopped chillies and coriander. Ingredients
0.75 l vegetable or chicken stock
2 small carrots, chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
1 large red onion, chopped
4 large garlic cloves
4 red/ orange peppers
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
Large handful of fresh basil leaves
Salt and pepper
¼ tube of tomato paste
Optional: 100 gms mixed dried pulses which have been pre cooked, 2-3 red finely chopped red chillies and a handful of coriander (if using coriander you can omit the basil)
Cut the pepper in half. Remove the stalk and seeds and cut into eigths. Place them on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and place them into the oven for 20 – 25 mins at 200 degrees or until the skins just start to look charred.
Peel and cut onion into 1/8ths. Remove outer leaves of garlic cloves but do not remove skin. Throw into roasting pan with roasted peppers. Add to peppers after 10 minutes.
Roughly chop carrots and celery into 1 cm cubes add to peppers and cook for 15 minutes.
Make up stock and add tinned tomatoes bring to a boil add roasted peppers and onion and peeled garlic and simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and add the fresh basil. Whizz everything together with a hand held blender, taste and check for seasoning.
Enjoy with a dollop of crème fraiche and basil leaf for garnish.