Roasted Tomato Tequila Soup
Roasting the tomatoes adds a deep flavour dimension to this soup. I always use Roma tomatoes because they are meatier, with less liquid, and produce a more intense flavour and thicker soup. The tequila gives it the kick, but you can leave it out if you prefer.
2 dried pasilla chili peppers
15 medium-size ripe Roma tomatoes
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp. Mexican oregano
5 tbsp. olive oil
1 large white onion, diced
2 tsp. smoked spanish paprika
6 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup tequila
1. Preheat the oven to 400F degrees. Cut the chilies open and place them in a hot, dry cast-iron pan over medium-high heat. Toast them for about 2 minutes on each side. Remove the stem, place the chilies in a bowl and cover with hot water. Let them soften for about 30 minutes. Strain off the water and set the peppers aside.
2. Cut the tomatoes in half and place them on a cookie sheet in a single layer, cut side up. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, garlic and oregano. Drizzle with 3 tbsp. olive oil. Place in the oven and bake for about 1 hour. Remove and let cool.
3. Transfer the cooled tomatoes to the bowl of a food processor, along with the drained chilies. Puree and set aside. Heat the remaining 2 tbsp. oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sautÃ© until nicely browned. Add the paprika. Cook and stir one more minute.
4. Add the chicken stock, pureed tomato/chili mixture, cilantro and parsley. Simmer on low until heated through. Adjust the seasoning to suit your taste. Ladle into bowls and top with a splash of tequila. Serve hot or cold.