Zucchini Eggplant Soup

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Ingredients

  • 2 :tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 :red onion, chopped
  • 2 :teaspoons garlic, chopped
  • 1 :large zucchini, chopped
  • 1 :small eggplant, chopped (about a cup)
  • 1 :red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 :pounds fresh or canned tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 :teaspoons dried basil
  • 1/4 :dried thyme
  • 2 :cups chicken stock
  • cayenne:pepper to taste
  • 1 :teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 :teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

Preparation

  1. In a large saucepan, saute the onion and garlic in the oil for about 3 minutes then toss in the eggplant, zucchini, and pepper and saute, stirring from time to time, another 5 minutes.
  2. Mix in the tomatoes with their juice and stir.
  3. Stir in the basil, thyme, stock, cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper.
  4. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  5. If you are going to serve the soup hot and chunky, ladle it into bowls immediately.
  6. Spoon a little balsamic vinegar over each serving and sprinkle with fresh basil.

Tips

If you'd like to serve it as a puree, ladle the solids into the blender first, then thin with the broth. You can serve it hot immediately--or chill and serve it cold. In all cases, garnish each bowl at serving time with a dribble of balsamic vinegar and fresh basil shreds.

This soup is a take off of a classic ratatouille. Great hot or cold, pureed or not, as a first course or a meal.