(makes 8 to 10 cups)
1 tbl. olive oil
1 tbl. unsalted butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
1 tbl. flour (See note for other thickeners at end of recipe.)
28 oz. can of San Marzano tomatoes, diced or chopped
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock (I usually use Swanson’s vegetable stock)
freshly ground black pepper
optional: ½ cup cream
Heat olive oil and butter over medium heat in large saucepan. Stir in onion with a big pinch of salt. When it sizzles, stir once more, cover, and reduce heat to low. Cook for at least 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the carrots after five minutes. Taste the onions and if they’re bland, stir in a bit more salt. Continue to cook, covered, until the onions are completely soft.
Stir in the flour, over low heat. Cook, stirring every once in awhile, for 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, stock and pepper. Bring to boil, cover, and reduce heat to a nice simmer. Cook for 25 minutes. If adding cream, add it 2 minutes before the end of cooking time. Puree as desired. Or drizzle a bit of cream in each bowl just before serving.
To use other thickeners:
To thicken with rice – Skip the flour and stir in a good ¼ cup of raw white rice, when adding the tomatoes. Puree using any of the methods above.
To thicken with a potato – Add one peeled, chopped Yukon gold potato when adding the tomatoes. Puree in a blender or using an immersion blender.