Roasted pepper soup with paprika and basil

Makes enough for 2 as a main dish, 4 as a starter

 

2 large red bell peppers, quartered and seeds and stalk removed

2t rapeseed or sunflower oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

2 sticks of celery, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1t stock powder

1/2t sea or Himalayan salt

1t hot smoked paprika

1 litre of water

10 mini plum or cherry tomatoes, halved

10 basil leaves

 

Put the peppers on a tray, grill on a high heat until the skin blisters and burns. Remove and allow to cool. Once cool remove the skins and discard.

Heat the oil in a medium sized saucepan, add the onion and celery, lower the heat and put a lid or plate on top. This will help to sweat the onion and celery making it cook well without too much oil.

Once the onions are translucent, around 10 minutes, add the garlic, cook for a further 5 minutes.

Add the stock, salt, paprika, water, tomatoes and peppers. Turn the heat up, once it is boiling reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the basil leaves, blend with a hand / immersion blender or in a jug blender that is suitable for hot liquids. Blend the soup until it is completely smooth. The smooth texture will really make quite a difference.