This spicy tomato soup recipe was originally published on my innkeeping blog, Inn The Kitchen, in 2010. It has since been revised! Hope you enjoy the recipe!
Spicy Tomato Soup
Looking for a spicy tomato soup with a lot of flavor and umami? Youv’e come to the right place. This soup has a secret ingredient: chocolate! Now, stay with me, because chocolate truly adds such a tremendous depth of flavor to this soup. Originally, chocolate was not served sweet at all, but spicy! And this recipe for a spicy tomato chocolate soup sent to us by Chestnut Street Inn really highlights chocolate in it’s most original form, savory and multidimensional.
Chocolate As A Savory Ingredient
When researching the original savory version of chocolate, I found the word Kah KOW as the phonetic spelling of cacao. It just sorta jumped off the page at me. Sounds like a cartoon, “pah POW,” doesn’t it? As if the word cacao should be in a little cloud star burst in a comic strip when all hell is breaking loose. I think I’ll add it to my repertoire of socially acceptable food expletives. Instead of yelling something profane, I’ll really just be screaming CHOCOLATE! And since chocolate is a great comfort food, it can also be a silky comforting expletive slipping across my tongue.
The last time I screamed expletives while cooking, it was simple 6 ingredient recipe that went awry. A recipe that I had previously done countless times just perfectly, but then really “Kah KOW’d” it up.
So then I dove into this 20- ingredient, multi-step, hard-to-find-spices recipe and it turned out great. Go figure?! I guess because some of the ingredients were not currently in my spice rack, and the fact that I’d be combining chocolate with tomatoes, maybe that gave me pause and I paid more attention to what I was doing.
This Chocolate Tomato Soup Is Worth The Effort
The multiple steps in this spicy tomato soup recipe are worth it. Take your time to measure out all the ingredients listed and the recipe will come together smoothly and efficiently. And then enjoy how cooking this unusual combination of flavors will unfold like a TV drama in the best possible way.
When I first made this recipe over a decade ago, I had a heck of a time finding harissa. I looked all over the supermarket. Thankfully, global ingredients and spices are more readily available today. But depending on where you live, this is one spice you might need to purchase online.
In my creative zen at the grocery store, since Harissa is a type of chili paste, I figured I could make a substitute at home. And while it tasted great, it’s not really the same thing. So here are some references for you. There’s Harissa you can buy online if you can’t find it locally at your grocery store, or you can make Harissa at home.
Personally, I like the taste of a little heat, but not so spicy that I can’t feel my tongue. The amount of spice used in this spicy tomato soup recipe can definitely be adjusted to accommodate your comfort level of spiciness.
On with the recipe! Gather together the ingredients and pre-measure everything. This will help your spicy tomato soup come together quickly and easily. Here’s what you’ll need:
Spicy Tomato Soup Ingredients
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Unsalted Butter
- Garlic Cloves
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes
- Harissa (North African Chili Paste)
- Hungarian Paprika
- Dry Sherry or White Wine
- Can Diced Tomatoes
- Chicken Broth
- Italian Parsley
- Bittersweet Chocolate
- Queso Fresco, Goat Cheese or Crème Fraiche (for garnish)
- Parsley (for garnish)
First, start by heating oil and butter in a stock pot over medium heat. Add chopped onion and sauté the onions until translucent.
Add the minced garlic, celery, carrots, and sun dried tomatoes to the same pot at the onion. And now all the “characters” of this recipe are getting thrown together in the same plot … I mean … pot.
Here comes the heroine of this savory tomato chocolate soup story: Hungarian Paprika. She’s also a bit spicy and mysterious, but words like “pain” are not associated with this spice. At least not with regular paprika (there’s a hot paprika too if you want added heat!) I happen to think paprika has a sort of bacon flavor to it.
Add the rest of the spices and a little wine too. You can use white wine, sherry, and even Champagne. Whatever you happen to have on hand. Heat up the wine with the ingredients in the pot and scrape up any brown bits at the bottom of the pan.
Add the remaining ingredients listed in the recipe, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 45 minutes to an hour.
It will start to look like a chunky chili as it cooks. Once all the flavors have simmered for an hour, you can use and immersion blender to blend it all together and make the soup smooth. If you don’t have an immersion blender, turn of the heat and let the soup cool. Then add to a regular blender to finely chop and blend all the ingredients together. If using a regular blender, you’ll need to pour it back into the stock pot to re-heat.
The volume of the soup is alot, so you may need to do two rounds of blending if using a regular blender. Have an extra large bowl or pitcher on hand to pour the first batch of blended soup into until the stock pot is empty and ready for all the soup to be re-heated. Truly, though, this spicy tomato soup recipe is the perfect time to get out your immersion blender if you have one so you can just blend it hot in the soup pot.
Add the blended soup back to you stock pot. Then add the parsley. Then add the hero … kah KOW! Otherwise known as chocolate. He’s smooth and rich, and while a bit bitter, he still absolutely melts with the other characters.
Next, add a little honey to counter the spicy and cut the acidity. Look at hour rich and dreamy this soup turns out!
For serving, add a bit of creamy mild crumbled cheese. You can use queso fresco, goat cheese or crème fraiche. Top with parsely and enjoy!
Spicy Tomato Chocolate Soup
from Chestnut Street Inn, Sheffield IL
Spicy Tomato Soup
This spicy tomato soup is packed with flavor and is the perfect soup for chilly nights!
- 2 Tbl Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 Tbl Unsalted Butter
- 1 Onion, Diced
- 3 Cloves Garlic, Minced
- 2 Carrots, Peeled and Diced
- 2 Celery Stalks, Diced
- 1 Cup Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Sliced
- Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper to Taste
- 3 Tbl Harissa (North African Chili Paste)
- 2 tsps Hungarian Paprika
- 2 tsps ground Cumin
- 1 tsp ground Coriander
- ½-3/4 cup Dry Sherry or White Wine
- 1-28 oz Can Diced Tomatoes
- 4 Cups Chicken Broth
- ¼ Cup Cilantro, Chopped
- ¼ Cup Italian Parsley, Chopped
- 3-4 oz Bittersweet Chocolate
- 2 Tbl Honey or to Taste
- Queso Fresco, Goat Cheese or Crème Fraiche to garnish
- Parsley to garnish
- Heat oil and butter in a stock pot over medium high heat until butter melts.
- Add onion and sauté until translucent, approx. 5 mins. Add garlic, carrots, celery and sun dried tomatoes.
- Season with salt, pepper, harissa, paprika, cumin and coriander. Saute for a couple of minutes to toast spices and soften vegetables.
- Add wine and continue cooking on high until all of the liquid has evaporated. Add tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 45 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
- Pass soup through a food mill or blender to puree and remove any large particles. Return soup to pot and place over low heat.
- Add parsley and cilantro. Add chocolate and enough honey to balance acidity. Adjust seasoning to taste.
- Serve hot, garnished with crumbled cheese and fresh parsley.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 679Total Fat: 37gSaturated Fat: 20gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 28mgSodium: 3060mgCarbohydrates: 52gFiber: 12gSugar: 18gProtein: 15g
Nutrition information provided is only an estimate.
Fiona Manoon says
It looks very yummy.
Thanks for sharing such a delicious recipe with us.