Simple Summer Tomato Soup

About a month ago, Hubbs came home with a giant bag of home-grown tomatoes from a work buddys bumper spring crop.
Of course I couldn’t use them all before they would go bad, so I froze half of them.
I do this the way my grandmother always did: wash and toss them in a freezer bag, whole. I don’t core or peel them.
I’m using these for this recipe, but any fresh tomatoes will do.

Simple Summer Tomato Soup
3-4 pounds fresh tomatoes (I used 8 big ones)
4 cloves peeled garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
7 cups water
4 celery stalks, sliced thin
1 medium onion, diced small (about 2/3 cup diced onion)
Additional salt and pepper to taste

Bring the tomatoes, garlic, water, salt and pepper to a simmer.
Cover and simmer low for 15 minutes, until the tomatoes start to break up.
Uncover and raise heat to high and boil the heck out of them for 10 minutes, then add the rest of the ingredients, reduce heat and simmer another 10 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, spoon out about 1/2 of the solids BUT make sure you get all the tomato cores and the large pieces of skin as well as the garlic cloves.
Puree or blend these until smooth, then add them back to the simmering soup.
Adjust seasonings and serve.
After the cooking and evaporation, this leaves you with about 6 cups of soup.

You can, of course, add things like diced carrots, potatoes, zucchini or yellow squash to make it heartier.
Hubbs likes this with some rice cooked in. I usually add his cooked rice to his bowl then ladle the soup over.

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