Our garden is just on fire this month.  Tomatoes are being produced at a phenomenal rate and our basil is just in fantastic shape!   I haven’t really been posting as many recipes lately because frankly, I haven’t been cooking nearly as much.  The summertime is just my least inspired season to explore in the kitchen because of the heat, but truly, with our garden producing as much as it has, how could I not!

This bisque was a fantastic and light weeknight dinner and because W always makes crostini topped with salt, pepper, olive oil and parmeggianno reggianno when I make soup, it made for a nice meal.


  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 1 large red onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 6 good sized fresh tomatoes, blanched, peeled, and chopped
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 cup half & half
  • 1 good sized bunch basil leaves, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste


Over medium heat in a large stock pot or dutch oven, melt the butter.  Add the onions and saute for a few minutes until tender.  Add the bell pepper and the garlic and stir quickly.  Add the chopped basil and cook until everything smells fragrant.

Add the tomatoes and tomato paste, and stir until everything is well incorporated.  Add the vegetable stock and bring everything to a boil.  Season with salt and pepper, and add the balsamic vinegar.  You may want to add more to taste.

Simmer for about 15 minutes, blend the soup in batches in a blender or use a stick blender to combine.

Add and stir in the half & half until well incorporated.  Warm through, and serve immediately.