8 tomatoes, cut in half horizontally
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tbsp dried or fresh base herbs (thyme, sage, rosemary, oregano…)
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
3 tbsp rapeseed or olive oil
1 onion, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, washed and diced
1 leek, washed and diced
1 apple, diced (peel on)
1 bay leaf
1/2 tbsp vegetable bouillon
1/2 tbsp tomato puree
Maldon sea salt and pepper
Prep time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour 10 mins
Heat the oven to 180 degrees. Lay the tomato halves upwards in a roasting tin and sprinkle generously with sea salt and pepper. Sprinkle over the sugar and herbs and lightly splash them with vinegar. Scatter some of the chopped garlic over each tomato and finally drizzle generously with oil. Roast for 45 minutes, or until the tomatoes take on a little colour and smell fantastic.
Meanwhile, chop the onions, celery and leek and saute them gently in oil. When they start to become translucent, add the apple and continue to cook for 5 minutes or until it starts to soften.
Add the tomatoes and scrape out the sticky caramel residue from the roasting tin using s little cold water and the back of a wooden spoon. Give the whole pot a good stir and add enough water to cover the vegetables by about 3cm. Add the bay leaf, bouillon and tomato puree and bring to the boil for 20 minutes.
Take off the heat, remove the bay leaf and whizz with a hand blender. Taste and season with salt and pepper as necessary.
If there is any soup left over, use it as a delicious sauce for a pizza, or add to a bolognaise or vegetable stew..