Three-Tomato Soup with Cashew Cream

It’s officially fall! Do you know what that means here in Florida? Nothing.

Thankfully, I can blast my A/C and indulge in this creamy, vegan tomato soup and pretend like I’m going to wear an extra layer today.

This soup is very similar to my go-to tomato soup that I’ve posted on here before, but this recipe uses life-changing cashew cream instead of dairy and uses three types of tomatoes — San Marzano, cherry and sun-dried. The result? It’s totally delicious.

Using this cashew cream in place of heavy cream can transform nearly any recipe into a healthy, nutritious and how-is-there-not-cream-in-this dish.

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I’m even thinking about trying to substitute some of this for a bechamel sauce. I know it sounds like tons of nuts would translate to a super fatty dish, but just a handful goes a long way. I seriously used 1 serving of nuts for the entire soup. AND nuts offer more nutritional value than heavy cream, milk, or cheese — leaving you light, full and satisfied after eating.

This is not to say that I don’t totally close my eyes when I’m eating an insanely delicious, creamy bechamel lasagna, a heavenly whole-milk latte or anything that requires “more cheese,” — I just like to balance it out.

I have been trying to eat less animal products. I watched Cowspiracy on Netflix (do it) and it really pushed me to make a small change. I can’t give up my latte BUT I am going to attempt to froth my new hazelnut milk that I can’t stop drinking. I just can’t seem to sacrifice a test run yet because I’ve been having overnight oats with the hazelnut milk and sneaking sips of it throughout the day and I want/need every last drop. (I’ll be posting it soon.)

What else? Oh, I’m moving. Isn’t moving the worst? Thinking about moving a couch downstairs and up 3 other flights is totally eyeroll-worthy. It took me 3 days to put an IKEA dresser together and I’m pretty sure I cried twice.

My landlord asked us if we wanted to renew and we said yes and then she texted us back basically saying never mind, and now we have to leave.

-__________-

So, it’s been a little hectic around here. But I am excited about a new place. It’s got an upgraded kitchen that’s still rental-ugly but not totally linoleum-counter-tops ugly, vaulted ceilings and pretty “wood” floors. Oh, and I’m really excited about paying a lot more for rent. Can I do that face again? -_____-

It’s been a non-stop apartment-idea factory in my brain all month. I spent an embarrassingly amount of time picking out my bedding and after I finally came to a decision, the cashier at Bed Bath & Beyond said “Hey, it’s your money not mine,” (who does that?) after she rang me up. 

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Okay so soup in fall. I really wish it would cool down below 80 degrees here. I mean really, am I reaching for the stars? (movie trivia!)

I want coats and boots and flushed cheeks and sweaters. It drops here to a bone-chilling 70° for 3 days or so and that’s usually around Christmas. I’m hoping to go to D.C with Matt in December, I’m so excited. An excuse to buy pretty layer-y winter clothes?! Um, yes!

Oh right, soup. So I did add some whole wheat orecchiette to this soup because everything is better with pasta. Those cute little ear pasta (the Italian translation) are perfect for soups or pasta salads or a baked pasta dish. Serve this soup with some crusty bread and you are good to go. This is not a thin soup, although if that’s what you’re into (and maybe we need to have a discussion about that) you can always add more water. This is a thick, dense, creamy, comfy tomato basil soup that dreams are made of. You’ve got a little sweetness from the sun-drieds, a tang from the surprising balsamic vinegar and a richness from your bad-ass cashew cream. That’s right. This cashew cream belongs on a Harley with a bandanna and Ray Bans.

I just… I don’t know sometimes..

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Three-Tomato Soup with Roasted Garlic Cashew Cream

Serves 2-3

 30 minutes cook time

  • 1 can San Marzano tomatoes, whole or crushed — I use unsalted
  • 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes
  • heaping handful sun-dried tomatoes*
  • 1 San Marzano can full of water (about 2 cups)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 clove roasted garlic
  • heaping bunch of fresh basil
  • cashew cream (see recipe below)
  • crushed red pepper and black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup orecchiette or any pasta you have on hand — ditalini would be good here too.
  • 1-2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • extra virgin olive oil

Heat a large saucepan to medium heat and drizzle or spray with olive oil. Once hot, add minced garlic. Once you can smell it, add your tomatoes. Fill the now empty San Marzano can up with water and add to soup. (This is about 2 cups of water) Add crushed red pepper and black pepper. Bring to a soft boil. Cook down your tomatoes, smashing them down and stirring every now and then. Taste your soup in about 20 minutes. Does it taste too tomato-y still? Watery? It’s not done yet. Continue to cook down your soup until its got a rich, thick flavor — usually achieved in 20-30 minutes.

Add pasta and cook until pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes depending on your pasta and how high the boil is. I kept mine at a slower boil, just over medium heat on the burner. Add balsamic. Once pasta is cooked and soup has cooked down and it smells heavenly, take your soup off the burner and turn heat off. Add half of your cashew cream and fresh basil and toss together. Top with more drizzled cashew cream, some fresh basil a crack of black pepper and extra drizzle of olive oil if you’re really feeling Mediterranean.

*I use sun-dried tomatoes NOT packed in oil. If this is all you can find, just make sure you’ve drained them a bit before adding to soup.

Cashew Cream
Makes about 1/2 cup*

  • 1/4 cup raw unsalted cashews
  • 1/4 water
  • 1 clove garlic (I like to use a roasted garlic clove)
  • Juice from half of a lemon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper

Soak cashews in water for at least 2 hours if you can. If you are short on time, add very hot, not boiling, water and soak for 30 minutes. Add garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper before blending. (I use my mini magic bullet.) Taste and adjust seasoning.

There’s your cream! Use any place where a recipe calls for cream.

*Use equal parts cashews to water — you can always make more.

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