As promised, here it is the Eggplant Parmesan Soup inspired by the New England Soup Factory Cookbook and cooked with the help of Soupa Sista Kimberly Conon.
Serving Size: 8-10
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 80 min.
2 large (approximately 1 to 1 1/4 pounds each) purple eggplants
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large Spanish onion, peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 1/4 cups canned stewed tomatoes
2 cups tomato juice
8 cups vegetable stock
1 cup white wine
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
4 cups garlic croutons
2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Wash the eggplants and pat dry. With a fork, prick each one in several places. Place on a roasting pan or baking sheet and place in the oven. Roast for 40 minutes until soft. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.
2. Peel back the skin and dice the eggplant pulp. Discard the skin. Place the pulp, a small amount at a time, onto a cutting board and chop into small pieces. (Don’t worry about its appearance. It is supposed to look wet and a bit mushy.) Return to the mixing bowl and set aside.
3. Heat a stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, garlic, onion, and celery. Sauté for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the eggplant pulp, tomatoes, tomato juice, stock, wine, oregano, and basil. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 35 minutes.
4. While the soup is simmering, place the croutons in the bowl of a food processor and process them into breadcrumbs. Set aside.
5. After the soup has simmered, add all the contents into a food processor and puree until blended. Put soup puree back into the soup pot.
6. To finish the soup, add the cheese, stirring while it melts. Add the vinegar, salt, and pepper, and stir well. Stir in the breadcrumbs. Simmer an additional 5 to 7 minutes before serving.
7. Garnish with grated parmesan cheese, croutons, and Italian parsley.
8. Smile, you’ve just eaten the best soup of your life.