Hello everyone, it’s Scott again. My weather app just sent me a notice that the cold weather is coming in. A hard freeze is on its way. Here in West Texas, that means the the notice also told me to weatherize my crops and animals. While I do have some chickens in the backyard, they’re hearty enough to withstand a little cold. Me, however, I need to prepare myself. And that means stocking up on some cold-weather foods, the sort you can pull out of the fridge and reheat quickly and satisfyingly when you get home on a dark, cold winter day.
And that’s just one reason I love this creamy tomato bisque. First of all, it is super simple to make, just pour a bunch of stuff into a pot and let it simmer for a bit. Then, you’re ready to freeze it to reheat on a day when you need something hearty and warm, something simple yet flavorful.
Besides its easiness, I also love this recipe for its complexity of flavors. The marinara sauce provides pre-seasoning while the pumpkin and the half-and-half tone down the brightness of the tomato and also fill out the texture. All together, you get a smooth, mildly spicy soup that goes perfectly as an appetizer to a fuller meal or as a complete meal when served with a crispy grilled cheese sandwich. (And it would be great in a bread bowl!)
Creamy Tomato Bisque
48oz marinara sauce (I prefer basil flavored, but any will do)
5 C chicken broth
1 can pumpkin puree
1/2 to 3/4 Quart half-and-half, depending on creaminess desired.
1/2 tsp garlic powder + an additional shake
A generous shake of onion powder
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp dry basil
Salt to taste – depending on the saltiness of your broth, anywhere from a teaspoon to a whole tablespoon.
Black, red, and/or white pepper to taste. (I add about 1/2 tsp of each because I like some heat.)
Mix all ingredients in a large stock pot with the lid on.
Simmer on low for at least an hour, stirring only occasionally.
Serve hot, garnish with a dollop of heavy cream and a generous amount of fresh Parmesan cheese which will get all melty over the top.
I highly recommend a crusty bread for dipping, if not a generous supply of grilled cheese sandwiches.
If you enjoyed this recipe then be sure to check out my other recipes:
Be sure to follow Sarah’s Pinterest board Tried & True Recipes for tasty inspiration.