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thyme for tomatoes!

There is no better time to make fresh tomato soup than right now, the height of tomato season.

So even if you’re not growing tomatoes in your own garden, get out to your local farmer’s market and pick up some ripe locally grown tomatoes and throw together this soup, enjoy hot, cold, or at room temperature.

Summer Thyme Tomato Soup

3 tablespoons olive oil
4 cups peeled and minced onions
1 1/2 cups peeled and thinly sliced carrots
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 bay leaf
4 pounds ripe tomatoes, halved, seeded, chopped (about 6 or 7 cups)
4 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup fresh thyme leaves, plus more sprigs for garnish
2 cups croutons

Heat the olive oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat.  Add onions, carrots, garlic, and bay leaf.  Cover; cook until carrots are tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.

Add tomatoes. Cover; cook until tomatoes release their juices, about 10 minutes. Uncover; cook until the mixture reduces slightly, stirring often, about 15 minutes.

Add broth and thyme leaves. Partially cover the pot and simmer until the mixture is reduced to 6 cups, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes longer.

Discard bay leaf.  Puree half of the soup in a blender.  Return to pot and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Divide soup between 8 soup bowls. Top with croutons. Garnish with thyme sprigs.

Serves 8

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