(from The Greens Cookbook, Deborah Madison and sent from Kristine and Arthur who add their young child likes it too!)
- 1-2 eggplants, approx. 1 ½ pounds
- 1 large red onion, halved not peeled
- 1-2 med red peppers, halved and seeded
- 2 medium ripe tomatoes
- 4-5 thyme branches or ½ tsp dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 TB basil leaves chopped (optional)
- 7 cups water/vegetable stock
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 cup diced bread
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wipe outside of eggplants, halve them lengthwise, brush surface with olive oil. Salt and pepper cut surfaces, set halves on baking sheet, start baking.
Brush oil on cut sides of onion, both sides of peppers, and tomatoes. Add to pan after eggplants have cooked 20 minutes.
Continue backing another 20 minutes, until eggplant is soft and beginning to collapse and skins of all vegetables are loose and wrinkled
Remove veggies from the oven and cool briefly. Take off skins, then chop all veggies in large pieces.
Slowly warm 2 TB olive oil in thyme, bay leaf, garlic, dried basil. Add veggies, salt (and chopped basil if using). Pour in water/stock, boil, cover, then simmer slowly for 25 minutes.
Cool soup briefly, then puree in a blender at low speed (we use one of those handheld blenders to puree right in the pot). Return to pot and season with salt & lemon juice. Thin with additional water/stock if needed.