Ratatouille Soup (version II)

2 pounds ripe tomatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onions
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1 medium zucchini
1 eggplant, peeled and chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 cups vegetable stock
2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil leaves
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne

Peel and deseed the tomatoes. Do this by making an "X" on the bottom of the tomatoes with a knife, dropping them in boiling water for thirty seconds. Transfer to ice water, pull the skin off, cut in half, squeezing slightly over a strainer, removing the seeds, reserving the juice. Chop the tomatoes and add them to the juice.

In sauté pan, heat the olive oil. Add onions and garlic, cook for one minute. Add zucchini, eggplant, and bell pepper, cooking for four minutes. Add vegetable stock, basil, and tomatoes. Season with salt, pepper, and touch of cayenne. Bring to boil, simmer for fifteen minutes. Serve as a chunky soup, or puree soup in blender, as desired. Good served hot or cold.



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