Preparation time: 20 mins
Cooking time: 2 hrs
8 plum tomatoes halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus extra, if needed
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, plus extra, if needed
1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon water
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely minced or pressed through a garlic press
2 teaspoons herbs de Provence
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups water
Olive oil or sour cream, for serving (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. place the tomatoes in a large bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, the salt, and the pepper. Arrange the tomatoes on the baking sheet, cut side down, drizzle with 1 tablespoon of water, and bake until their skins start to shrivel about 1 hour. Remove the pan from the oven and carefully peel off the tomato skins and discard. Turn the tomatoes cut side up and continue to bake until they are shriveled but not dry, 40 to 50 minutes longer. Remove the pan from the oven and set aside.
2. While the tomatoes are roasting, prepare the soup base. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, reduce the heat to low, and cook until very soft, stirring often 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in the garlic and herbes de Provence and cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Pour in the broth and the 1 1/2 cups water and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and gently simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off the beat and let the soup base cool until the tomatoes are ready.
3. Transfer the tomatoes and any accumulated juices on the sheet pan to a blender. Add the soup base and puree until very smooth (you may need to work in batches — don’t fill the jar more than two thirds full). Strain the puree through a fine-mesh sieve and into a clean saucepan. Warm the soup over low heat, taste, and add more salt and pepper if needed. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil or a dollop of sour cream (if using)