Typical nutritional content (per portion)
3 red peppers, halved, cored and seeded
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
225g (8oz) plum tomatoes peeled, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons tomato puree
900ml (1½ pints) vegetable stock
1 tablespoon torn fresh basil, plus extra sprigs, to garnish
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas Mark 5. Arrange the pepper halves in a baking tin, cut side up. Drizzle over half the olive oil and then sprinkle the vinegar and thyme on top. Place in oven and roast for 20-25 minutes until softened and lightly golden.
When the peppers are cold enough to handle, slip the skins off the peppers and discard, then chop the flesh roughly, reserving as much of the juice as possible. Set aside until needed.
Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a pan, add the onion and garlic and sweat for 10 minutes until lightly golden, stirring occasionally. Add the reserved pepper flesh with the plum tomatoes, tomato purée and stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes until slightly reduced in volume. Add the basil and then blitz with a hand blender until smooth. Season lightly with pepper and then ladle the soup into warmed bowls. Garnish with the basil sprigs to serve.