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Sunday, April 7, 2013

ROASTED PEPPER, TOMATO AND CHEDDAR SOUP



ROASTED PEPPER, TOMATO AND CHEDDAR SOUP
This soup is ultra-tasty and so good for you too!  Serve with the Cheese Snack Crackers.  This good-for-you soup is a great way to get plenty of veggies and more protein than in one whole egg.  Lovely soups like this make me wish I could be transported to Canada for an evening in front of a roaring fire (we had wood stoves in Chalet Rose in the Okanagan Valley, B.C.).  Although folks do have fire places here on the mountain, because believe it or not it gets quite cool and almost cold at times; especially at night.  However, we don't have a fire place and I can't think where we could put one.  It would probably be easier to build a fire pit outside rather.  At our home in Bearspaw, Calgary, we used to have one.  It was such fun with the boys and we'd roast marshmallows and hot dogs occasionally. We also kept the fire going while we watched movies on the wall outside in lounger chairs under blankets, with Happy choosing one of us to cuddle with.  Oh how I do miss Happy and Smiley. I get a little tearful every now and then as Smiley's passing was so recent. 

Yep, I'm afraid we were not low-carbers at that stage of our lives, nor were we particularly health conscious.  It was, in fact, in that home that my doctor father-in-law told me to take the kids off Kool-Aid - too much sugar!  He also told us to stop eating margarine and go back to butter.  I did listen to him and I'm glad I did.  He is now 87 years old.  Guess he knows a thing or two!   When we moved to Burlington,Ontario not too far from the famous Niagara Falls - that's where I became a low-carber!

3 large bell peppers
  (red, yellow and orange, but not green)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 roma tomatoes, chopped
3 cups chicken stock (750 mL)
  preferably homemade
1 cup whipping cream (250 mL)
1 tbsp Italian seasoning* (10 mL)
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (250 mL)
Salt and black pepper, to taste
Hot sauce, to taste, if desired

Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C).  Cut peppers in quarters and remove seeds.  Place on lightly greased baking sheet and bake approximately 40 minutes, turning pieces every 10 minutes.  Allow to cool before removing skin.

In large frying pan, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion and cook until turning translucent.  Add garlic and cook 2 minutes.  Add peppers, tomatoes, chicken stock, cream and Italian seasoning.  Simmer about 20 minutes.  Blend soup in batches with Cheddar cheese.  Serve hot.

Helpful Hint:  I liked this soup with that amount of Italian seasoning, but if you dislike a noticeable herbal taste, then reduce the amount of Italian seasoning to 1 tsp or 2 tsp (5 or 10 mL).

Yield:  8 servings
1 serving
231.7 calories
7.8 g protein
18.8 g fat
7.7 g net carbs

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