Red Pepper Soup

When I see those colorful bags of peppers in the store. I buy them assuming I am going to eat them all raw, in salads and for dips. Of course, this is not possible, and this unusual soup is a great way to use them if you are bell pepper fan like me! It is best served on the day it is made.

You can spice this up with crushed red peppers or almost any kind of hot sauce. Additionally, if you halve the amount of chicken stock, it makes a great pasta sauce for almost any medium-size shaped pasta.

Yield: 8 to 10 cups.

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 Spanish onion, halved and coarsely chopped
2 red bell peppers, cut into wide strips
2 green bell peppers, cut into wide strips
2 yellow bell peppers, cut into wide strips
One 16-ounce can diced tomatoes, including the liquid
8-10 cups chicken stock
1 to 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 cup heavy or light cream, sour cream, or plain yogurt
ΒΌ cup chopped fresh dill, cilantro, or basil leaves, plus additional for garnish
Black pepper

1. Place a large heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium heat and when it is hot, add the butter. When the butter has melted, added onion and peppers and cook until tender, about 10 to 15 minutes.

2. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the onion and peppers to a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse until they are bite-size. Return them to the soup pot. Add the tomatoes, stock, and mustard, raise the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.

3. Gently add the cream, dill, and pepper, stirring all the while. Serve immediately, garnished with the extra herbs.

From Warehouse to Your House: More than 250 Simple, Spectacular Recipes to Cook, Store, and Share When You Buy in Quantity (Simon & Schuster, 2006)